Calamity Jane (1953) was a movie I saw once on my Kindle Fire over a year ago. Seeing it on the big screen with an enthusiastic audience was a treat I hadn’t expected. Cari Beauchamp, the award-winning writer and documentary filmmaker, introduced the film. Of course the history is all wrong; there isn’t that much we know for certain about Calamity Jane (Doris Day) and her relationship with Wild Bill Hickok (Howard Keel). We’re not even sure if they knew each other at all, but so what; it’s a movie. Beauchamp encouraged those in the audience to go to the Academy Award Web site and petition for a special Oscar for Day. She certainly deserves it, as the morning crowd at the Chinese Multi-Plex would attest. The fun started as soon as the credits began to roll. When Day’s name came on the screen, the audience broke out in applause. Keel’s name was also welcomed with a good round of clapping as was the rest of the cast and director David Butler. Each musical number was a joy to watch, with each followed by more clapping and hooting. The world premiere restoration was beautiful. The film was an amazing showcase for Day’s singing (what a voice!), dancing, and comedic acting and timing. The songs by Sammy Fain and Paul Francis Webster were catchy and the Oscar-winning “Secret Love” became one of Day’s signature tunes. After the movie concluded, I was humming the “Deadwood Stage” for the next two days all the way back to Chi-caw-gee!
|Steward, Hussey, John Howard, Hepburn, and Grant|
|Sophia Loren, Marriage Italian Style|
After the film it was back to the Roosevelt Hotel to say goodbye
Well it was time for bed and getting up early for the flight back to Chicago or is that Chi-caw-gee!
This was my first time at the TCM film festival. I had never been to a film festival before so the experience was completely new to me. It was both exciting and overwhelming, but great fun. If I have the good fortune to attend again next year, I’ll be better prepared. Look for my next blog post: Tips for First-Timers coming soon.