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CHRISTMAS WITH MEL BROOKS
December 25, 2014  | By David Bianculli

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

 
TCM is of the opinion that there are fewer better ways to spend Christmas night than some films by one of Hollywood’s most celebrated Jewish comic actor-writer-directors. I couldn’t agree more – and for tonight’s Mel Brooks mini-marathon, TCM focuses on the films in which Brooks himself stars or is featured. His affectionate Alfred Hitchcock spoof, 1977’s High Anxiety, starts things off, with Madeline Kahn (pictured, with Brooks) doing a perfect imitation of Hitch’s trademark icy blondes. At 10 p.m. ET, 1976’s Silent Movie follows, then, at 11:45 p.m. ET, Brooks’ sparkling 1983 remake of the Jack Benny wartime comedy, To Be or Not to Be, a movie in which Brooks gets to play opposite his wife, Anne Bancroft, who’s terrific. At 1:45 a.m., the film barrage ends with Brooks’ 1970 adaptation of a comic tale from Russian literature, The Twelve Chairs – and the Brooks Christmas event ends at 3:30 a.m. ET with a replay of Brooks being interviewed by Dick Cavett for an onstage special in 2006. Happy holidays, Mel! We’ll be watching.
 
 
 
 
 
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