Spring Is in the Air - 4/19 (Daytime)
"Spring is nature's way of saying, 'Let's party!'" Robin Williams once said. Join the festivities with TCM as the sap rises, new life blossoms and our fancies lightly turn to thoughts of love. On April 19, we offer a daytime of films reflecting the vigor and joy-and sometimes the heartache-of spring. Here are highlights:
The Swan (1956), Grace Kelly's Hollywood swan song, has her cast to type as a princess, enjoying a springtime fling with a tutor (Louis Jourdan) before she is due to settle down with a prince (Alec Guinness). The film was released in the spring of 1956 as Kelly married the real-life Prince of Monaco.
Brigadoon (1954) is a musical about an enchanted Scottish village that appears for just one day every 100 years. Of course, that has to be a day in springtime, with "the heather on the hill." Gene Kelly and Cyd Charisse are the graceful stars.
April in Paris (1952) is a Doris Day vehicle casting the bubbly star as a chorus girl headed for Gay Paree on an ocean liner who falls in love with a loose-limbed government official (Ray Bolger). Day, of course, sings the lovely title song, written by Vernon Duke and Yip Harburg.
The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone (1961), based on the Tennessee Williams novel, features a moving performance by Vivien Leigh as an aging actress drifting through a lonely springtime in the Eternal City, where she is exploited by an Italian gigolo (Warren Beatty).
The Secret Garden (1949), adapted from the often-dramatized novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, stars Margaret O'Brien as the orphan girl who brings new spirit to a family estate by finding and restoring a hidden garden that comes to life one magical spring.
Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975) is a highly regarded Australian film about the disappearance of several schoolgirls and their teacher during a picnic at the mysterious landmark in Victoria. Peter Weir directs.
Palm Springs Weekend (1963), stars Troy Donahue stars as one of many college students who spend Easter weekend in Palm Springs and is confronted by blossoming romances, teenage angst and drama. This Warner Bros. production was inspired by 1960's Where the Boys Are, and Norman Taurog directs.
Also screening are the shorts Springtime in the Netherlands (1951) and Violets in Spring (1936).
by Roger Fristoe