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Four-Star Films : 'It Happened One Night'

November 17, 1996|Kevin Thomas

Frank Capra's 1934 romantic comedy, the first movie to win all five major Oscars, belongs in the pantheon of great American films. Wise-cracking reporter Clark Gable (left) is trailing spoiled runaway heiress Claudette Colbert (right) when they cross paths on a bus from Florida to New York. Very early on, Colbert teaches Gable that when it comes to hitchhiking, a shapely leg is mightier than the thumb--while he in turn cuts her down to size. The film is loaded with great moments, including the famous Wall of Jericho sequence involving a blanket dividing a motel room (Gable revealed he didn't wear undershirts and that sent a tremor through the clothing industry). This is one of the most enduringly enjoyable movies of all time (TMC Friday at 6 a.m.).

Other selected four-star films airing this week:

How Green Was My Valley / AMC, Sunday, 6:30 p.m. and early Monday, 2 a.m.

The Awful Truth / TMC, Monday, 6:20 a.m.

Rebecca / Cinemax, Monday, noon

Atlantic City / TMC, Monday, 11:20 p.m. and Thursday, 12:05 p.m.

The African Queen / TBS, Tuesday, 9:50 p.m.

North by Northwest / Cinemax, Friday, noon.

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