Thursday, February 08, 2007

31 days of Oscar: day 8

This month, Turner Classic Movies celebrates movies and the Academy Awards by presenting 31 Days of Oscar. Each Day from Feb.1 through March 3, a different category of the awards will be the theme of the day; featuring films that were nominated or won in that category. The Shelf will be joining in the celebration by giving you our Oscar pick of the Day!

Today's category is Best Actor - Winners. Today's schedule includes some of the finest performances from some of our greatest actors like James Stewart, Cary Grant, Spencer Tracy and Robert Duvall. Here's today's schedule (all times are EST):

6:00 AM A Free Soul (’31)
8:00 AM Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (’32)
10:00 AM The Informer (’35)
11:45 AM Captains Courageous (’37)
1:45 PM Goodbye, Mr. Chips (’39)
3:45 PM Stalag 17 (’53)
6:00 PM The Philadelphia Story (’40)
8:00 PM The Goodbye Girl (’77)
10:00 PM Tender Mercies (’83)
11:45 PM Lilies of the Field (’63)
1:30 AM Network (’76)
4:00 AM Charly (’68)

And our Oscar pick goes to... The Informer! This is a fantastic character piece set against the backdrop of the Irish Rebellion in the 1920s. The wonderful Victor McLaglen plays a member of the rebellion, Gypo Nolan, who has been cut from the group. He is down on his luck and starving. When he discovers that his girlfriend has been reduced into prostitution he betrays a friend to the British authorities for a reward. Even though he has the money, he isn't free from his conscience. The film follows Nolan in the course of a tense, insulating night where his choices will lead to overwhelming guilt and eventually retribution.

Victor McLaglen won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his fantastic performance as Nolan. The film was nominated for 6 Academy Awards and won, in addition to Best Actor, a Best Director award for John Ford, Best Score for Max Steiner, and Best Screenplay. You can watch the film today on TCM, or you can order the DVD through the usual online retailers and the TCM shop. The Informer was released last year on DVD as part of the John Ford Film Collection Box Set. It is not currently available as a single release. You can also pick up the book on which it is based: The Informer by Liam O'Flaherty.

For more information on TCM's 31 Days of Oscar, visit the Turner Classic Movies website.

Oh, I know it's a penny here and a penny there, but look at me. I worked myself up from nothing to a state of extreme poverty.

Oh dear, oh dear. I have a queer feelin' there's going to be a strange face in heaven in the mornin'.

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