TCM is in the midst of a wonderful triple-feature today. Citizen Kane is over, but it's followed by All the King's Men and then The Last Hurrah (starring Spencer Tracy as a political boss). Great movies, but I couldn't figure why the channel is running them on Father's Day.
I just got my answer.
Because it’s Father’s Day, the host Ben Mankiewicz invited his father, Frank, to co-host with him and program the films! And before and after, they talk about the movies and related things.
For those who don't know, Frank Mankiewicz was the song of Herman, who wrote Citizen Kane, and the brother of Joseph, who directed such films as All About Eve and Cleopatra. He himself had an illustrious career in politics, among other things being Robert Kennedy's press secretary, campaign director for George McGovern's presidential run and being on Richard Nixon's infamous Enemies List.
I only caught the end of their discussion about Citizen Kane, but the talk before All the King’s Men (that dealt as much with politics as movies) was absolutely wonderful.
As I write this, All the King's Men just started, so there's plenty of time to set your DVR to catch their later exchanges. This includes the following movie, of all things Smokey and the Bandit, which Ben selected as one of his favorite movies as a kid and his father sat through countless times with him.
Coming after that are To Kill a Mockingbird, and then The Kid. Whether these are part of Mankiewicz Programming, or TCM taking over at this point, I don't know. (From what I can tell and have tracked down, I think they're TCM-selected for Father's Day.) Whatever, here's a nice article about Mankiewicz father and son, and a good Q&A with Frank Mankiewicz.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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