Monday, May 05, 2008

Springtime for Sinatra

Turner Classic Movies has declared May "Frank Sinatra Month," and I definitely roll that way. Last night the channel broadcast a terrific, Emmy-winning 1965 TV special, Sinatra: A Man and His Music, and telecasts of additional Sinatra shows are scheduled for subsequent Sunday nights this month. I found this kind of programming kind of fuddy-duddy as a kid, but what did I know? Much as I've come to love his recordings from the late Fifties and early Sixties, that prime period, there's nothing quite like seeing him swing those hits, with those initimatable vocal inflections and surprising hand gestures. (It's hard to believe he taped it while suffering from a cold.) An epitome of cool, and TCM also showed some of his earliest features, from the early Forties, to see how he got that way.

And there are of course the movies, from the sublime (From Here to Eternity, The Man with the Golden Arm) to the ridiculous (Dirty Dingus Magee). Warner Home Video is also breaking out the box sets, celebrating the early years, the Fifties peak (including Vincente Minnelli's underrated Some Came Running, MIA on DVD till now), and the Rat Pack flicks. All in all a very good month for Ol' Blue Eyes, who died May 14, ten years ago.

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