Thursday, September 27, 2012

Midnight Cinephile's Halloween Movie Primer - Turner Classic Movies

Here's a little something you may not know about the ol' Midnight Cinephile.  Though I spend hours upon hours of the wee hours watching B - Z grade celluloid madness, I have another passion that almost rivals that of my horror love:  Classic film.   I am absolutely head over heels in love with the golden age of Hollywood.  If it's a classic film then I'll watch it.  I don't care what genre it is.  Horror, Film Noir, Drama, Comedy, Western, Musicals....hell I'll even watch a good classic romance!  I can't get enough.  Turner Classic Movies is one of my all time favorite cable stations and they keep the good stuff coming in October.

There isn't a movie fest per se.  There's no fanfare, no special hosts or gimmicks.  It's simply added right into the programming.....and there's something that I love about that.  Don't get me wrong....I love my FearFest and 31 Days of Halloween.  I love the hype and excitement of big spooky celebrations.  But I also love the quiet dignity in which TCM presents their Samhain offerings.  TCM first gives us a full day of spooky classics on Saturday, October 27th.  

Starting with The Devil Doll (1936) at 6:00am and ending 24 hours later with Witness To Murder (1954), TCM gives us 14 films running the gamut from 1946 Karloff classic Bedlam to the sublime 1955 chiller, Diabolique.  At 2:00pm(EST) they also show the original documentary A Night of the Movies: The Horrors of Stephen King.  It's going to be a fantastic day of classic movie mayhem!  You can see the full day's schedule here.

Sunday, October 28th, we are treated to a nice run of films starting at 8:00pm (EST)  We're treated to a trilogy of Ray Harryhausen films!  First up is the classic 20 Million Miles to Earth (1957).  This is one of my favorite Harryhausen films and features a fantastic battle sequence between an elephant and the films monster, called the Ymir.  Not to be missed!  At 9:30 comes Earth vs The Flying Saucers (1956).  Tim Burton payed homage to Harryhausen's stop motion saucers in his 1996 film, Mars Attacks.  The final Harryhausen film is First Men in the Moon (1964) which is of course based off the story by H.G. Wells.   As if this isn't enough, we're then treated to the 1925 silent Lon Chaney classic The Phantom of the Opera and the extremely chilling M (1931) which is quite possible Peter Lorre's greatest performance.  An absolutely fantastic line-up that is most worth of your DVR's space!

On Tuesday, October 30th, we get another 6 films!  Starting with the 1927 silent film The Unknown (another great Lon Chaney film!  Don't miss this one!) at 8:00pm (EST) and finishing up with Suddenly Last Summer (1959) a film about a wealthy widow trying to silence a girl with by means of a lobotomy!  You can check out the rest of Tuesday night here.

And finally on October 31st, we get the greatest line up of films this Halloween season!  We start with another Lon Chaney film, London After Midnight (1927) and ends on a high note with Universal's The Invisible Man.  You can also see House of Dark Shadows (1970) as well as the Roger Corman shocker Dementia 13 (1963).  You can see the whole day of programming for Halloween HERE.

This is a great opportunity to watch lots of great films that don't get played very often on TV, so fire up them DVR's and plan your schedules!  There's nothing better than any one of these old classics and a bottle of wine!  Red, naturally.  Unless you're Dracula, because obviously you never


  1. I know the "First Men in the Moon". I was watched with pleasure.

    Kulak Zari Ameliyati

  2. First Men on the Moon is one of my favorites!

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