The film series is sponsored by Robert H. (Hank) Royer, Jr., in memory of his grandfather, who was a founding father of the Eisenhower Foundation and Abilene High School classmate of President Eisenhower. The three films chosen are movies President Eisenhower viewed while he was in the White House.
The first film, Angels in the Outfield, was Eisenhower’s favorite movie, states David Eisenhower in the recently published book, Going Home to Glory. “Sergeant Moaney, [Eisenhower’s personal aide] claimed to have run the movie for Eisenhower precisely thirty-eight times. At the conclusion of every showing, Grandad would sit silently, allowing his eyes to adjust to the light. ‘Wonderful show,’ he would say almost inaudibly, rising from his chair and wandering off to bed.”
Angels in the Outfield
Thursday, March 3
Starring: Paul Douglas, Janet Leigh, Keenan Wynn
A young woman reporter blames the Pittsburgh Pirates' losing streak on the obscenely abusive manager, Guffy McGovern. While she attempts to learn more about him for her column, he begins hearing the voice of an angel promising him help for the team if he will mend his ways. As he does so, an orphan girl who is a Pirates fan and has been praying for the team begins noticing angels on the ballfield. Sure enough, the Pirates start winning, and McGovern tries to turn his life around. But can he keep his temper long enough for the Pirates to win the NL pennant? 1951. Black and White. Rated G. 99 minutes.
Thursday, March 17
Starring: Alan Ladd, Jean Arthur, Van Heflin
Based on Jack Shaeffer's novel, a drifter and retired gunfighter helps a homestead family that is terrorized by an aging cattleman and his hired gun. In fighting the last, decisive battle, the gunfighter sees the end of his own way of life. Mysterious, moody and atmospheric, this classic Western myth is enhanced by the intense performances of its cast. The film won the Academy Award for Best Cinematography. 1953. Color. Not Rated. 117 minutes.
Kiss Me Kate
Thursday, March 24
Starring: Howard Keel, Kathryn Grayson, Ann Miller
Fred and Lilly are a divorced pair of actors who are brought together by Cole Porter who has written a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew. Of course, the couple seem to act a great deal like the characters they play. A fight on the opening night threatens the production, as well as two thugs who have the mistaken idea that Fred owes their boss money and insist on staying next to him all night. 1953. Color. Not Rated.109 minutes.