Works of JOY: Novak in PICNIC on TCM Sep 27 11:30PM EST

Ted Keer's picture
Submitted by Ted Keer on Sun, 2006-09-24 07:07

If Objectivism is a philosophy for living life on earth, then it should have little time for quibbles, and much for joy. In that spirit, I have decided to post regularly on those things, art works, news items, and simple observations that have brought Joy to my life, in the hope to share that same Joy with others who seek it.

TCM 2PM EST Sunday Sep 24

Bell Book & Candle
This 1958 romantic comedy stars Kim Novak as a witch living in modern Manhattan who does the one thing a witch must not do, fall in love with a mortal. This light-hearted work is one of Novak's best, although her Romantic lead, Jimmy Stewart, is poorly cast for the part. Novak's Gillian Holroyd has heard of the old wives tales that say a witch can't ever cry, or fall in love, without losing her powers. After a whirlwind romance with Stewart, Novak finds out that this time it's more than just a case of "hot blood," it's for real. Ernie Kovacs, a hack writer and drunk who thinks he knows about witchcraft, is initiated into the "lifestyle" by Novak's brother, played by Jack Lemmon. The movie is visually lush and features Novak at her most alluring. The nightclub encounter where Novak steals Stewart out from under his fiancée's nose is a classic, a barefoot Novak at her best. Camille Paglia has described the movie, which she sees as a metaphor for the hidden love lives of the homosexuals of the 1950's, as one of her all-time favorites. This light-hearted fantasy pleases on many levels, and bears repeated viewings
Ted Keer, 24 Sep 2006, NYC

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Kim Novak in PICNIC (on TCM Weds 27th 11:30PM EST)

Ted Keer's picture

Although I have only managed to catch glimpses of this film on a DVD that skips, from what I've seen, Kim Novak fans shouldn't miss this showing on TCM. In fact, it was after seeing Novak in Bell Book & Candle (where she was much more alive than in the critically acclaimed Vertigo) that I asked my father what he thought was her sexiest performance. My mother, a beautiful blonde herself, was (unbeknownst to me) always jealous of my dad's attraction to her. After the glimpses I caught of her in the opening to Picnic reviewed at I understand why.

Novak Luminous

Jeff Perren's picture

One of my favorite films, which I've seen a dozen or more times. Kim Novak is luminous.

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