Nick: Did I ever tell you that you’re the most fascinating woman this side of the Rockies?
Nora: Wait till you see me on the other side.
From After the Thin Man, 1936 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when we think of February?
Valentine’s Day. Of course!
This is the time of year when the media, bookstores, and retailers reach out to romance writing types to help celebrate that most exhilarating and confounding of all human emotions… love.
As a digital-only author, I don’t do book signings, but I’m looking forward to joining a whole passel of local romance authors at Ashcombe Farm and Greenhouses in Mechanicsburg, PA on Valentine’s Day.
If you’re in the area and you could use some baked sweets, seeds, plants, or a little romance, stop by and buy a signed book, take home a post card, or sign up for a chance to win a gift basket full of donated Valentine goodies from our authors.
Coming in 2015 … the sequel to It Had to Be You
No kidding! Trixie Frank and Sean Costigan are set to return in a new romantic mystery–Toot Tootsie Goodbye.
What do you think of the title? I’ll have a blurb soon.
I’ve also been working with a talented new cover artist, so expect something a bit different this time. Stay tuned. 🙂
Love in the Movies…
TCM ‘s big to-do this month, of course, is its annual 31 Days of Oscar festival of Academy Award nominated movies. The line-up is phenomenal.
My humble self-appointed task was simply to pick a theme–take, love, for example (not just romance, mind you)—and choose some films about love in all its varied shapes, forms and sizes…
Thursday, February 5
♥ Desperado Love ♥
2:00 p.m. Bonnie and Clyde (1967) Crime/Drama. A 1930s bank-robbing couple’s crime spree cuts a violent swath through the American South. Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, Michael J. Pollard., Gene Hackman, Estelle Parsons.
Why? Beatty and Dunaway illuminate the screen with more than awesome good looks in this 1967 story based loosely on the crime spree of Depression-era lovers Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrows. Nominated for ten Academy Awards, it broke taboos for sex and violence and shot Dunaway to stardom (pun intended). And yes, it still rates a caution for violence.
Tuesday, February 10
♥ Bantering Witty Sleuth Love ♥
4:00 p.m. After the Thin Man (1936) Comedy/Mystery TCM. Nick and Nora Charles return home to San Francisco after Christmas in New York only to find yet another mystery to solve. Nora’s cousin has been accused of murder! Myrna Loy, William Powell, James Stewart.
Why? Loy and Powell return as bantering sleuths Nick and Nora Charles in the second of their wildly popular Thin Man movies. Their inimitable romantic chemistry remains front and center, but the mystery is cranked up several satisfying notches. (Watch a young Jimmy Stewart ooze early star power.)
Thursday, February 12 (13)
♥ Family Love ♥
3:30 a.m. Father of the Bride (1950) Comedy. TCM A family man is overwhelmed by the upheaval of planning his beloved daughter’s wedding. Spencer Tracy, Elizabeth Taylor.
Why? Tracy is perfectly cast as the crusty-on-the-outside, squishy-on-the-inside father of the bride, and a teen-aged Elizabeth Taylor charms as his effervescent daughter. A light family comedy with some misty-eyed moments to warm the heart.
Friday, February 13 (14)
♥ Three’s a Crowd Love ♥
2:15 a.m. A Place in the Sun (1952) Drama. TCM. A poor young man faces hard choices when the world of wealth and privilege beckons to him in the form of a beautiful young socialite. Mongomery Clift, Shelley Winters, Elizabeth Taylor.
Why? Spot-on performances by all three players in this riveting 1950s love triangle. Nineteen-year-old Liz Taylor scores her first time out in a serious, grown-up role, and Shelley Winters sheds her blonde bombshell image to the tune of an Oscar nomination. But it’s Montgomery Clift who owns this tragic tale of one man’s path to hell paved with good intentions.
Saturday, February 14
♥ Bantering Legal Beagle Love ♥
6:00 p.m. Adam’s Rib (1949) Comedy, Drama, Romance. TCM. Sparks fly on the home front when husband-and-wife lawyers represent opposite sides in a women’s rights case. Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Judy Holliday.
Why? Tracy and Hepburn are synonymous with smart romantic comedy, and this entertaining film with its battle-of-the-sexes story line is no exception. Hepburn’s heartfelt courtroom arguments for women’s equality may seem quaint today, but they’re a telling product of their time. How far have we come since then? And how far have we yet to go?
Times listed are EST. Check here for your U.S. time zone Turner Classic Movie monthly schedule.
(Missed something? You may be able catch it for a week or more on demand at Watch TCM)
Publicity Photo for The Thin Man – Author Unknown [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
It Had to Be You Cover Art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited ® – Copyright © 2014 by Harlequin Enterprises Limited
Bonnie and Clyde – Trailer – [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
After the Thin Man – By Trailer screenshot (After the Thin Man trailer) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Father of the Bride – By Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (work for hire) () [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
A Place in the Sun – Production Still from feature film by Paramount Pictures [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Adam’s Rib – By Trailer created by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons