Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mel Brooks salute

Mel Brooks was honored last month by the AFI; I don't really follow those things. At any rate, TCM is following the AFI's lead and honoring Brooks with an entire night on the TCM schedule, althoguh it's only three movies. The rest of it is non-movie programming. That starts at 8:00 PM with the AFI tribute, which was recorded for TV and will be getting a repeat airing as well, at 12:30 AM. If TCM was showing a three-hour movie, having only one film between the two airings of the AFI tribute wouldn't be so bad. But, the one movie is The Twelve Chairs at 9:30, which only runs 94 minutes. In between is a re-airing of the Carson on TCM interview and a documentary on the "2000 Year-Old Man" routine. To be fair, though, the Carson on TCM piece is the sort of thing I would expect to show up as a time-filler the way the vintage one-reelers are.

The other two feature films are Young Frankenstein at 2:00 AM and The Producers at 4:00 AM, which will be followed by an interview Brooks did on the Dick Cavett Show. The Cavett interviews were the length of the entire program and not individual segments as on Carson, so it's a different type of interview.

I suppose part of the reason for there being so few Brooks movies on TCM tonight is that he did a lot of his stuff at Fox. TCM has been having more success at getting movies from Fox to show on TCM, which is a nice thing. Tomorrow night, for example, they've got The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie on which, like Young Frankenstein has been in heavy rotation on FMC in the past. TCM seems to be having more luck with Fox than with Universal, but not as much as with Columbia.


Tom said...

Do you have a favorite Mel Brooks movie?

Ted S. (Just a Cineast) said...

That's a good question. Mel Brooks is the sort of filmmaker whose movies I sometimes find a bit too wacky, as in the scene from The Producers that was shown in the AFI tribute where Zero Mostel is trying to get Gene Wilder to stop being so hysterical.

Still, I really like The Producers. I also have a soft spot for High Anxiety since I'm a Hitchcock fan and that was the first of the Brooks movies I saw.