January 27, 2014

Movie Monday+ : To Be or Not To Be

This is it! This is it! The glorious beginning of TCM’s 31 Days of Oscar!

Well, Saturday is. However, TCM has provided a great slew of movies all this week before 31Days starts to whet our appetites, so that’s where we’re going to start and that’s where this week’s Move Monday feature is coming from!

1939. Poland. Hitler is breathing down Western Europe’s neck. A troupe of local thespians is rehearing a satirical play ridiculing the little man with the mustache, until government authorities, squeamish about “offending” the genocidal dictator, close the play down and force married leads Joseph and Maria Tura (Jack Benny and Carole Lombard) to perform Hamlet for the 500th time (or something like that).

“We don’t want to offend Hitler, even though he’s already bent on offending and dominating the rest of the world!” (Ugh, sound familiar?)


While performing Hamlet, Maria meets the charming young Polish airman Stanislav Sobinski (a dashing Robert Stack – the guy from “Unsolved Mysteries” some 40 years later). For Maria, he’s a pleasant distraction and a nice ego boost to a woman whose husband is more focused on his career than his marriage. But for Stanislov, it’s true love.

Without warning, Hitler marches into Poland, and they all find themselves living under Nazi occupation. The Turas and Company employ their acting skills with the Polish Underground, and before they know it, they have an opportunity to actually take on Hitler personally.

A screwball comedy about Nazi occupation. Only slightly irreverent, but lots of good fun. An all-star cast of lead and supporting actors with a script that is witty enough to showcase both Benny and Lombard’s skills. “To Be or Not To Be” is going to be on Tuesday, January 28, at 4:30 pm CST.

The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer (1947) – Monday, January 27, 12:30 pm CST
The Merry Widow (1934) – Tuesday, January 28, 9:30 am CST
Ninotchka (1939) – Tuesday, January 28, 11:15 am CST
The Shop Around the Corner (1939) – Tuesday, January 28, 1:15 pm CST
To Be or Not To Be (1942) – Tuesday, January 28, 4:30 pm CST
The Harvey Girls (1946) – Wednesday, January 29, 9:15 am CST
The Tender Trap (1955) – Friday, January 31, 10:00 am CST
Boys’ Night Out (1962) – Friday, January 31, 2:00 pm CST
The Time Machine (1960) – Friday, January 31, 9:00 pm CST

Feb 1
1939 Best Picture Nominees
Ninotchka – 9:00 am CST
Wuthering Heights – 11:00 am CST
Stagecoach – 1:00 pm CST
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington – 2:45 pm CST
The Wizard of Oz – 5:00 pm CST
Gone with the Wind – 9:00 pm CST
Love Affair – 3:00 am CST

Feb 2
Best Picture Nominee Marathon
Kings’ Row (1942) – 6:45 am CST
12 Angry Men 5:15 pm CST
1945 Best Picture Nominees
The Bells of St. Mary’s – 11:00 pm CST
Spellbound – 1:15 am CST
Anchors Aweigh – 3:15 am CST
Mildred Pierce – 6:00 am CST

Feb 3
Best Costume Design Nominee and Winner Marathon
How to Marry a Millionaire (1953) – 8:00 am CST
It Should Happen to You (1954) – 12:00 pm CST


  1. This is one of my favorite times of year as well. Looks like I need to get busy setting my DVR!

  2. I am moving this week and have decided that cable/satellite just isn't worth the money. I will miss my DVR, especially this time of year!


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