Thursday, April 10, 2008

April 10 birthday greetings

Whenever I'm strapped for lack of ideas, or, as is the case today, finding that the movie I'd like to recommend becayse I just saw it on TCM is unfortunately not available on DVD, the easy way out is to look up who's celebrating a birthday today, and type out a quick post on that subject. To be honest, it's something I could do 365 days a year, since it would guarantee no repeats, but it would get boring mighty quick. This week's schedule on TCM happens, by lucky coincidence, to contain a few movies relating to people with April 10 birthdays, but aren't on the schedule because of the people born on April 10.

Yesterday, I mentioned Juggernaut, with the ship's captain being played by Omar Sharif. Today, it turns out, is Sharif's 76th birthday. Sharif, in addition to acting, is a fairly expert bridge player, probably much better than Norma Desmond's waxworks in Sunset Blvd..

Also, as part of TCM's tribute to Charlton Heston, they're showing Heston's Oscar-winning performance in the 1959 version of Ben-Hur. The epic movie is probably best known for the famous chariot race sequence, filmed in glorious wide screen. To be honest, though, I prefer The silent version. The original author of the novel, Lew Wallace, was born on this day in 1827. (No, he's not still alive!)

But happier birthday wishes go out to somebody who isn't appearing on TCM any time soon: Max von Sydow. Von Sydow's most famous movie is probably Ingemar Bergman's The Seventh Seal, in which von Sydow, seen on the right in the photo, plays a soldier returning from the Crusades who is confronted by Death and challenged to a life-and-death game of chess. Von Sydow's other most famous role is probably as Jesus in George Stevens' epic Bible movie, The Greatest Story Ever Told.

No comments: