Saturday, April 7, 2012

God vs. Rita Hayworth

I don't think there's any movie that really pitted God against the lovely Rita Hayworth. TCM's schedulers have done so, however, by programming a number of films with Hayworth as a temptress right before Easter. The night of Rita Hayworth movies begins at 8:00 PM with Gilda, which is this week's TCM Essential. Hayworth then goes on to tempt Orson Welles in The Lady from Shanghai at 10:00 PM; Robert Mitchum and Jack Lemmon in Fire Down Below at 11:45 PM; and Rex Harrison in The Happy Thieves at 2:00 AM.

As for the Easter films, they begin with Godspell 7:15 AM tomorrow. I'm not going to complain about one day of religious-themed movies on Easter Sunday, even if a lot of these -- such as the 1960 version of King of Kings at 9:00 PM tomorrow -- aren't my sort of film. But I can think of some other interesting ideas to play just before Easter.

The obvious one would be movies with "Devil" in the title, especially if we can avoid the actual Satan who shows up in The Devil and Daniel Webster. That having been said, a night of hell-themed movies could include such excellent films as Cabin in the Sky and the Ernst Lubitsch version of Heaven Can Wait. Unfortunately, it would probably have to include something like The Story of Mankind too.

No; I was thinking something more along the lines of The Devil and Miss Jones, or maybe Devil's Doorway. And then there's the Marine film Devil Dogs of the Air. That one is actually showing at 8:15 AM Monday on TCM.

Another good idea might be movies like The Omen or The Seventh Victim, because Satanic possession is just the thing to show during Easter weekend. The other transgressive thing might be charlatans like Elmer Gantry, or the Joan Crawford character in Susan and God. And add into that Tallulah Bankhead in Die! Die! My Darling!. There's a fun one.

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