MOVIES OF THE 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s


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          1915   1920   1921   1922   1923   1924   1925   1926   1927   1928   1929
1930   1931   1932   1933   1934   1935   1936   1937   1938   1939
1940   1941   1942   1943   1944   1945   1946   1947   1948   1949
1950   1951   1952   1953   1954   1955   1956   1957   1958   1959

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Movies of 1959

"The Battle of the Sexes" - Comedy with Peter Sellers, Robert Morley, Constance Cummings, Donald Pleasance.
Plot Intro: An American woman is called upon to help an executive bring his company into the twentieth century.
Review: Funny farce with Seller in good form.
Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Battle of the Sexes" at Amazon.com.
  • "Ben-Hur" - Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Haya Harareet, Stephen Boyd, Hugh Griffith, Sam Jaffe. Directed by William Wyler. Also known as "Ben Hur". Based on a book by Gen. Lew Wallace, an American Civil War general.
    Plot Intro: Two boyhood friends, one a Jew and one a Roman, are reunited in Jerusalem with deadly consequences.
    Review: One of the greatest films of all time. Nominated for twelve Academy Awards, and won eleven. Heston, Griffith, and Wyler won Oscars. The chariot race is probably the greatest action scene ever filmed. The cameras were huge and were mounted on trucks. If you watch the special features on the DVD version, you can see film of the size of the cameras. Nothing hand-held in this film. Also, when two teams of four horses are side-by-side, there is no way that wheels would come close. When you stop the the film at certain points you can see that the horses are attached to the chariot slightly differently. Most of the shooting is done where there are two horses on each side of the post that comes out of the chariot, but, when the wheels need to touch, they put three on oneside and one horse on the other. The film saved MGM from bankruptcy.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Ben-Hur" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Mating Game" - Romantic comedy with Tony Randall, Debbie Reynolds.
    Plot Intro: A tax collector is sent to a Maryland farm where the owner hasn't submitted a tax return in his life. He feels an attraction to the farmer's daughter.
    Review: Randall and Reynolds do not seem to be matched.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "The Mating Game" at Amazon.com
  • "The Mummy" - With Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing.
    Plot Intro: Archaeologists dig up, and then destroy, the tomb of an Egyptian queen. She is revenged by the mummy of a priest.
    Review: Good effort by Hammer Film Productions. Having Cushing and Lee in it elevates it.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Mummy" at Amazon.com
  • "North by Northwest" - With Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint, James Mason, Martin Landau. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: An executive is mistaken for a spy.
    Review: Hitchock ratchets up the tension, and Grant, Saint, and Mason are great.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "North by Northwest" at Amazon.com.
  • "Some Like It Hot" - With Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon, Marilyn Monroe, Joe E. Brown. Written and directed by Billy Wilder
    Plot Intro: Two musicians have to pose as girls musicians in order to avoid being killed. They head to Florida with an all-girl band.
    Review: A great movie. Curtis, Lemmon, and Monroe are perfect.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Some Like It Hot" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1958

    "The Blob" - Horror/Sci-fi with Steve McQueen, Aneta Corsaut.
    Plot Intro: An old man finds a meteor that breaks open. It contains a gooey blob which latches onto his hand It grows until it menaces a town.
    Review: Classic horror sci-fi. Noteworthy for the star Steve McQueen in the lead role. Corsaut later played Helen Crump on The Andy Griffith Show.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "The Blob" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dracula" - With Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing. AKA "The Horror of Dracula".
    Plot Intro: A young man goes to Dracula's castle to kill him but is trapped. After his friend drives a stake through his body, Dracula seeks revenge.
    Review: Lee and Cushing are very good in this early Hammer Film production.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Dracula" at Amazon.com
  • "Gigi" - With Leslie Caron, Louis Jourdan, Hermione Gingold, Maurice Chevalier, Zsa Zsa Gabor
    Plot Intro: A girl who is nearly ignored somehow becomes a graceful young woman.
    Review: A great musical romance. Caron, Jourdan, Gingold, and Chevalier are great. Excellent.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Gigi" at Amazon.com.
  • "God's Little Acre" - With Robert Ryan, Aldo Ray, Buddy Hackett, Jack Lord, Vic Morrow, Michael Landon, Tina Louise.
    Plot Intro: A farmer is obsessed with finding gold that his grandfather supposedly buried on the farm - so obsessed that he engineers the kidnapping of an albino.
    Review: Gritty, earthy, Tina Louise at times is pure sexuality on the screen.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "God's Little Acre" at Amazon.com
  • "The Hidden Fortress" - With Toshiro Mifune, Minoru Chiaki, Takashi Shimura. Written and directed by Akira Kurosawa. AKA "Kakushi toride no san akunin".
    Plot Intro: After a major defeat, a general of the defeated army must get the princess through enemy lines to safety. He has the "help" of two peasants who are scared at the least event.
    Review: Very good Kurosawa film. This film is said to contain some characters and events that inspired part of the plot of the movie Star Wars. Black and white.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Hidden Fortress" at Amazon.com.
  • "Imitation General" - War drama with Glenn Ford, Red Buttons, Taina Elg, Dean Jones.
    Plot Intro: A general is killed, but he saves his driver in the process. The driver, a sergeant, takes his identity during a battle.
    Review: Ford is just right in this film. It's kind of obvious when the film goes back and forth between a Hollywood set and filming on location. And there seems to be a lot of land and a scarcity of soldiers and action. Other than that, the film is entertaining.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Imitation General" at Amazon.com
  • "No Time For Sergeants" - With Andy Griffith, Don Knotts, James Millhollin, Larry Hagman, Jamie Farr. Based on the book by Mac Hyman.
    Plot Intro: Due to a misunderstanding, Will Stockdale, the young son of a Georgia farmer, is considered to be a draft dodger. Some who arrive at the camp with him perpetuate the misunderstanding by telling the barracks sergeant about him. The country boy is assigned to be "permanent latrine orderely." Things gradually spin out of control wherever he goes.
    Review: Andy Griffith is great. The Gomer Pyle character was probably based on Stockdale. Naive, lacking in understanding that most people have who are in contact with modern culture, it's a fish-out-of-water story. Humorous.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "No Time For Sergeants" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Old Man and the Sea" - With Spencer Tracy. Directed by John Sturges. Based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway.
    Plot Intro: An old fisherman who is not respected by anyone in the village - except a young boy, goes out in his small boat and meets his greatest challenge.
    Review: Excellent film. Partly narrated by Tracy.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Old Man and the Sea" at Amazon.com
  • "The Revenge of Frankenstein" - With Peter Cushing.
    Plot Intro: The mad scientist is thought to be dead, but he lives, and he wants to live forever.
    Review: Cush is very good.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • ""The Revenge of Frankenstein" at Amazon.com
  • "Touch of Evil" - With Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Marlene Dietrich, Janet Leigh, Dennis Weaver.
    Plot Intro: Newlyweds drive into a Mexican bordertown on their honeymoon.
    Review: A little quirky. Very dark, sometimes unsavory, and at times hard to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Touch of Evil" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1957

    "The Bridge On The River Kwai" - With Alec Guinness, Richard Widmark, Sessue Hayakawa. Directed by David Lean.
    Plot Intro: A large group of British soldiers arrive at a prison camp in the deep jungle of southeast Asia where there is a Japanese commander who needs to have a bridge built by a specific date.
    Review: One of the greatest films of all times.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Bridge On The River Kwai" at Amazon.com.
  • "Sweet Smell of Success" - With Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis.
    Plot Intro: A Broadway reviewer pushes his weight around.
    Review: Good film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Sweet Smell of Success" at Amazon.com.
  • "Throne of Blood" - With Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Minoru Chiaki. Written and directed by Akira Kurosawa. AKA "Kumonosu-jô".
    Plot Intro: Two loyal soldiers of a Japanese daimyo receive prophecies from a mysterious spirit in a labyrinthian forest. One is prophesied to gain control of his lord's region, and it is prophesied that the son of the other will gain control of the same region. The first retainer is weighed down by his suspicious wife.
    Review: An adaptation of Shakespeare's "King Lear." An excellent black-and-white samurai film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Throne of Blood" at Amazon.com.
  • "12 Angry Men" - With Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, E.G. Marshall, Jack Klugman
    Plot Intro: Men on a jury are angry that they have to be in a jury room in the middle of hot summer.
    Review: Excellent film, but aren't there only eleven angry men?
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "12 Angry Men" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1956

    "Anastasia" - With Ingrid Bergman, Yul Brynner, Helen Hayes, Akim Tamaroff.
    Plot Intro: Is she who she says she is?
    Review: Good Bergman film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Anastasia" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dial M For Murder" - With Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: A man plots to murder his wife who had an affair.
    Review: Classic Hitchcock.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Dial M For Murder" at Amazon.com.
  • "Friendly Persuasion" - With Gary Cooper, Anthony Perkins, Dorothy McGuire. Directed by William Wyler
    Plot Intro: A Quaker family during the Civil War.
    Review: A real delight. Highly recommended.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Friendly Persuasion" at Amazon.com.
  • "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" - With Kevin McCarthy, Dana Wynter.
    Plot Intro: Mysterious pods cause mysterious affects on local people.
    Review: Classic 50s horror. Excellent.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Iron Petticoat" - With Bob Hope, Katharine Hepburn.
    Plot Intro: A Soviet pilot is forced down in West Germany. An ace American pilot is assigned to convince her to stay.
    Review: Pretty awful film. Hope dominates. Hepburns stiffness and accent are hard to watch. Hope and Hepburn are miscast and mismatched. No wonder they never made another film together. A real stinker
    Rating: starno starno starno star
  • "The Iron Petticoat" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Man Who Knew Too Much" - With Jimmy Stewart, Doris Day. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: An American couple accidentally gets involved in international intrigue.
    Review: Great Hitchock drama.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Man Who Knew Too Much" at Amazon.com.
  • "Richard III" - With Laurence Olivier, John Gielgud, Ralph Richardson.
    Plot Intro: The plots of one of the royal family to become king.
    Review: Good dramatization of the Shakespeare play.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Richard III" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Ten Commandments" - With Charlton Heston, Yul Brynner, Ann Baxter, Edward G. Robinson, John Derek, Debra Paget, Yvonne DeCarlo. Directed by Cecil B. DeMille.
    Plot Intro: The Israelites want to leave Egypt. The Pharaoh doesn't want to let them go.
    Review: Typical DeMille treatment. Pretty good special effects.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Ten Commandments" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1955

    "Artists and Models" - Musical-comedy with Dean Martin, Jerry Lewis, Shirley MacLaine, Dorothy Malone, Eddie Mayehoff, Eva Gabor, Anita Ekbert.
    Plot Intro: A young man who is obsessed with comic books. He has vivid dreams that he calls out in his sleep. His roommate uses it as a basis for a successful comic book. In the meantime, they each meet a woman they are interested in. It turns out that the dreams are close to a secret formula, and the movie turns into a spy thriller-comedy.
    Review: Entertaining. Martin and Lewis split up the next year. Mayehoff is always entertaining. Very early MacLaine film. She does very well.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Artists and Models" at Amazon.com.
  • "Bad Day at Black Rock" - Drama with Spencer Tracy.
    Plot Intro: Spencer Tracy get physical. Tracy visits a small town, and, for some reason, everyone wants to attack him.
    Review: Kind of interesting for how the film portrays how karate is used.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Bad Day at Black Rock" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Court Jester" - Musical-comedy with Danny Kaye.
    Plot Intro: The rightful heir to the throne is a baby with a birthmark, and a man who poses as a Court Jester attempts to protect him. "The vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true."
    Review: One of the best Danny Kaye musical-comedies.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Court Jester" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Ladykillers" - With Alec Guinness, Peter Sellers, Herbert Lom.
    Plot Intro: A gang of cutthroats are no match for a little old lady.
    Review: A great British comedy of the 1950s.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Ladykillers" at Amazon.com.
  • "Marty" - With Ernest Borgnine
    Plot Intro: Everyone is pushing a man to get married later in life, but when he plans planning to marry he runs into problems.
    Review: Won Best Picture Academy Award, Best Actor in a Leading Role (Borgnine), Best Director (Delbert Mann), and Best Screenplay (Paddy Chayefsky).
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Marty" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Man Laramie" - With James Stewart, Arthur Kennedy, Donald Crisp, Jack Elam.
    Plot Intro: A former Army captain comes into town from Laramie to find out who is selling repeating rifles to the Indians - rifles used to massacre the troop his brother was in.
    Review: Considered by many to be one of the best westerns of the 1950s. Stewart and Kennedy are great.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Man Laramie" at Amazon.com
  • "The Red Balloon" - French film.
    Plot Intro: A red balloon follows a boy through Paris.
    Review: Excellent film for adults and children.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Red Balloon" at Amazon.com.
  • "To Hell and Back" - With Audie Murphy.
    Plot Intro: An underage, short, skinny kid joins the US Army in order to support his family. He starts as a buck private, but he ends as a lieutenant, and he becomes the most decorated soldier in World War II.
    Review: Audie Murphy was the most decorated American soldier in World War II. This is his story. He plays himself.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "To Hell and Back" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1954

    "The Caine Mutiny" - Drama with Humphrey Bogart, José Ferrer, Van Johnson, Fred MacMurray, E.G. Marshall, Claude Akins.
    Plot Intro: A naval officer acts unhinged, and his second in command takes over the ship. He faces a court martial. The Navy faces a quandry. Does it support its officer in spite of it being apparent that he is off his rocker? Is it ever right to mutiny?
    Review: Excellent work by all in the film, particularly Bogart.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Caine Mutiny" at Amazon.com
  • "The Last Time I Saw Paris" - With Elizabeth Taylor, Van Johnson, Walter Pidgeon, Eva Gabor, Roger Moore.
    Plot Intro: As the war ends, an American soldier is in the streets of Paris during the celebration where he meets a young woman. They fall in love. She's a free spirit, and he takes a while to figure out what he can do to be successful. His lack of success puts a strain on their relationship.
    Review: Early adult-Taylor film. She shows she is up to the task, and she's beautiful besides.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Last Time I Saw Paris" at Amazon.com
  • "On the Waterfront" - Marlon Brando, Rod Steiger, Eva Marie Saint. Directed by Elia Kazan.
    Plot Intro: The sister of a murdered dock worker attempts to find out what happened. A former prize fighter struggles to stand up to the correct bosses on the dock.
    Review: Excellent classic film. Brando and Steiger are at the top of their form.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "On the Waterfront" at Amazon.com.
  • "Rear Window" - James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Raymond Burr. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock
    Plot Intro: A photographer - who has a broken leg and is stuck in a very hot apartment - thinks one of his neighbors is a murderer.
    Review: Excellent film by Hitchcock, maybe his best. Grace Kelly is beautiful in the film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Rear Window" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Seven Samurai" - Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Minoru Chiaki. Directed by Akira Kurosawa. AKA "Shichinin no samurai".
    Plot Intro: Seven samurai help train simple villagers to defend their town from a gang of thieves.
    Review: Excellent Kurosawa film. Worth seeing on DVD in widescreen. Adapted for "The Magnificent Seven."
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Seven Samurai" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1953

    "The Affairs of Dobie Gillis" - Romantic musical comedy with Debbie Reynolds, Bobby Van, Bob Fosse, Hans Conreid, Barbara Ruick.
    Plot Intro: A college freshman falls in love with a girl whose parents expect her to study.
    Review: Early Reynolds film.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "The Affairs of Dobie Gillis" at Amazon.com
  • "The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T" - With Tommy Rettig, Hans Conreid.
    Plot Intro: Dr T plots to have 500 piano students playing the piano 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
    Review: I guess this is what adults thought was entertaining for kids in the 1950s. It's not very good.
    Rating: starno starno starno star
  • "The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T" at Amazon.com
  • "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" - With Marilyn Monroe, Jane Russell, Charles Coburn. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: Two girls are on the prowl.
    Review: A good musical romance from the 1950s.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" at Amazon.com.
  • "How to Marry a Millionaire" - With Marilyn Monroe, Lauren Bacall, Betty Grable.
    Plot Intro: Three women each plan to marry a millionaire.
    Review: Entertaining film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "How to Marry a Millionaire" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Naked Spur" - Western with James Stewart, Robert Ryan, Janet Leigh, Ralph Meeker, Millard Mitchell.
    Plot Intro: In the Rockies, two men help a bounty hunter capture a fugitive who is travelling with a young woman. The two men want a share of the reward. They begin their trek back to Kansas.
    Review: .
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Naked Spur" at Amazon.com.
  • "Roman Holiday" - With Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn, Eddie Albert. Directed by William Wyler.
    Plot Intro: A princess wants a day of freedom, without her entourage, in Rome.
    Review: A very nice film. Hepburn has a graceful beauty..
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Roman Holiday" at Amazon.com.
  • "Stalag 17" - With William Holden, Peter Graves, Otto Preminger. Directed by Billy Wilder.
    Plot Intro: Allied servicemen are in a POW camp, and they are plotting escapes.
    Review: A great movie.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Stalag 17" at Amazon.com.
  • "Shane" - With Alan Ladd, Jack Palance, Jean Arthur, Van Heflin, Elisha Cook Jr, Edgar Buchanan. Directed by George Stevens.
    Plot Intro: A man comes into a small town and becomes involved with the local farmers. The ranchers want to drive the farmers out.
    Review: Excellent movie. May be the greatest western. The more I watch it, the more I like it.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Shane" at Amazon.com.
  • "Wages of Fear" - With Yves Montand.
    Plot Intro: A truck filled with explosives going down and losing its brakes.
    Review: Foreign film. Excellent
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Wages of Fear" at Amazon.com.
  • "War of the Worlds" - With Gene Barry. Based on the book by H.G. Wells.
    Plot Intro: Invaders from Mars.
    Review: Classic sci-fi.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "War of the Worlds" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Wild One" - Drama with Marlon Brando, Mary Murphy, Lee Marvin.
    Plot Intro: A biker gang rides into a small town, and they are followed by a rival gang. Both groups start drinking, and trouble starts - degenerating into a lynch mob.
    Review: Brando is steamy, and Murphy is stunning. Some of the action is hard to watch. Some of the actors are more known for their work in comedies, so watching the movie is interesting.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Wild One" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1952

    "Angel Face" - With Robert Mitchum, Jean Simmons, Mona Freeman, Herbert Marshall, Jim Backus.
    Plot Intro: A young woman can lie and make a person believe she's doing them a favor. She schemes to kill her step mother.
    Review: Good film that would be better if the lawyers hadn't coerced the Simmons and Mitchum characters to get married. It made no sense.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Angel Face" at Amazon.com
  • "High Noon" - With Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly.
    Plot Intro: Men were released from prison, and they want revenge on the local sheriff.
    Review: Pretty good movie. Well choreographed/staged.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "High Noon" at Amazon.com.
  • "Pat and Mike" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Aldo Ray.
    Plot Intro: A woman athelete becomes involved with a coarse manager-promoter. She is great - except when her fiance is around.
    Review: One of the better Tracy-Hepburn films. Hepburn does much of her own sports action.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Pat and Mike" at Amazon.com
  • "Singin' in the Rain" - With Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O'Connor.
    Plot Intro: Three entertainers deal with movies changing over to sound.
    Review: A classic musical.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Singin' in the Rain" at Amazon.com.
  • "Springfield Rifle" - Western drama with Gary Cooper, Lon Chaney Jr, Alan Hale Jr, Martin Milner.
    Plot Intro: Confederate agents are stealing horses bound for the Union army, and they are trying to get a shipment of Springfield rifles. A Union Officer gets drummed out of the service and goes undercover in order to find out who the Confederates get their information from.
    Review: Cooper is good in westerns, and this is not an exception.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Springfield Rifle" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1951

    "An American in Paris" - Musical with Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron.
    Plot Intro: An American painter struggles in Paris.
    Review: One of the great musicals of the 1950s.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "An American in Paris" at Amazon.com.
  • "Lavender Hill Mob" - With Alec Guinness, Stanley Holloway.
    Plot Intro: Two men hatch a plot to steal gold and smuggle it out of Britain.
    Review: Very good comedy with Sir Alec.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Lavender Hill Mob" at Amazon.com.
  • "A Place in the Sun" - With Elizabeth Taylor, Montgomery Clift, Shelley Winters, Ann Revere, Raymond Burr. Directed by George Stevens.
    Plot Intro: A man is engaged to be married, but he falls in love with a beautiful woman.
    Review: Taylor may be at her most beautiful.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "A Place in the Sun" at Amazon.com.
  • "Rashômon" - Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Minoru Chiaki. Written and directed by Akira Kurosawa
    Plot Intro: The wife of a samurai traveller is raped by a bandit. Her husband is killed. But what really happened? So many different versions of the event.
    Review: Excellent Kurosawa film. Worth seeing on DVD in widescreen.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Rashomon" at Amazon.com.
  • "A Streetcar Named Desire" - With Vivien Leigh, Karl Malden, Marlon Brando, Kim Hunter. Directed by Elia Kazan. Based on the play by Tennessee Williams.
    Plot Intro: A woman's sister moves in with her and her husband.
    Review: A very good film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "A Streetcar Named Desire" at Amazon.com.
  • "Strangers on a Train" - With Farley Granger, Ruth Roman, Leo G. Carroll, Patricia Hitchcock. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Screenplay by Raymond Chandler.
    Plot Intro: A tennis player meets a man on a train who has a plan to solve both of their problems.
    Review: Later remade as "Throw Mama From The Train" (1987).
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Strangers on a Train" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Thing From Another World" - Science-fiction with Margaret Sheridan, Kenneth Tobey, Robert Cornthwaite, James Arness. Also Known As "The Thing".
    Plot Intro: Something from outer space hits the arctic near a scientific outpost. The people have to investigate the crash.
    Review: Pretty good 1950s science fiction movie about a plant-based life form who deserves to be feared.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Thing From Another World" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1950

    "All About Eve" - With Bette Davis, Ann Baxter, George Sanders, Celeste Holm, Marilyn Monroe. Directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz.
    Plot Intro: An older actress meets a scheming understudy.
    Review: A very good film. Marilyn Monroe has a small part.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "All About Eve" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Asphalt Jungle" - With Sterling Hayden, James Whitmore, Sam Jaffe, Marilyn Monroe. Written and directed by John Huston.
    Plot Intro: A jewel heist gone bad.
    Review: A very good film. Marilyn Monroe has a small part.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Asphalt Jungle" at Amazon.com.
  • "Born Yesterday" - With Judy Holliday, Broderick Crawford, William Holden. Directed by George Cukor.
    Plot Intro: A woman comes across as not so smart, but she isn't as dumb as she looks.
    Review: Judy Holliday's best film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Born Yesterday" at Amazon.com.
  • "Cheaper By The Dozen" - With Clifton Webb, Myrna Loy, Jeanne Craine, Edgar Buchanan.
    Plot Intro: An efficiency expert moves his large family from Providence, Rhode Island to Montclair New Jersey.
    Review: Great classic.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Cheaper By The Dozen" at Amazon.com.
  • "Cinderella"
    Plot Intro: The story of Cinderella and her glass slipper.
    Review: An animated classic.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Cinderella" at Amazon.com.
  • "Father of the Bride" - With Spencer Tracy, Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Bennett, Billie Burke. Directed by Vincent Minnelli.
    Plot Intro: A man has to come to terms with his daughter getting married - and the realization that he has grown old.
    Review: Very good film. Elizabeth Taylor is beautiful.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Father of the Bride" at Amazon.com.
  • "Harvey" - With James Stewart, Josephine Hull, Jesse White. Mary Chase wrote the screenplay based on her play.
    Plot Intro: A man's sister wants to commit her brother to an asylum, because he sees a pooka.
    Review: James Stewart and his invisible 6 foot 3.5 inch rabbit friend. One of my all time favorites. I can't count how many times I've watched it. Josephine Hull received an Academy Award.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Harvey" at Amazon.com.
  • "Key to the City" - With Clark Gable, Loretta Young, Frank Morgan, Marilyn Maxwell, Raymond Burr, James Gleason, Lewis Stone.
    Plot Intro: At a mayors' convention in San Francisco, two mayors meet, spark, and fall in love.
    Review: A basic romance with San Francisco, Gable, and Young thrown in. Gable is very good - as usual, and Young is one of my favorite actresses of this period.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Key to the City" at Amazon.com
  • "A Lady Without A Passport" - With Hedy Lamarr.
    Plot Intro: A woman wants to get into the United States.
    Review: Hedy Lamarr is considered by many to be the most beautiful woman ever on the screen. And she is a good actress, too.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "A Lady Without A Passport" at Amazon.com
  • "Sunset Boulevard" - With William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Eric von Stroheim. Written and directed by Billy Wilder.
    Plot Intro: A young man ends up living in the home of a star of the silent era.
    Review: A classic. Recommended.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Sunset Boulevard" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1949

    "Adam's Rib" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Judy Holliday, Tom Ewell. Written by Ruth Gordan and Garson Kanin. Directed by George Cukor. Music by Cole Porter.
    Plot Intro: A jealous wife shoots her husband and tries to shoot his mistress. She ends up on trial for attempted murder. Two lawyers, married to each other, end up on both sides of teh case.
    Review: One of the more entertaining of the Tracy-Hepburn films.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Adam's Rib" at Amazon.com
  • "All the King's Men" - With Broderick Crawford, Joanne Dru, John Derek, Mercedes McCambridge.
    Plot Intro: A politician rises and falls.
    Review: A great film. Recommended.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "All the King's Men" at Amazon.com.
  • "Always Leave Them Laughing" - With Milton Berle, Ruth Roman, Virginia Mayo, Alan Hale, Bert Lahr.
    Plot Intro: The struggles of a young comic to make it big.
    Review: Most people only know Berle from his TV show - if they know him at all. Berle made this film a few years before his TV show. He is able to show how versatile he was - and how energetic he was. A whirlwind.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Always Leave Them Laughing" at Amazon.com.
  • "Jour de Fete" - Foreign-language film with Jacques Tati. Written and directed by Jacques Tati. French-language; some subtitles. Also known as Jour de fête (Day of the Festival/Carnival).
    Plot Intro: A postman in a small French town struggles with day-to-day life after a carnival comes into town. A landscape painter is in town at the same time, painting some scenes.
    Review: Tati acts mostly in pantomime in some humorous scenes. The film is mostly black and white. As the painter paints on his canvas, the items he adds to his canvas suddenly burst into color. When this began to happen I thought that Tati would gradually colorize ever possible colorful item in the film, but the colorization soon stopped. The items colorized remained colored until the end of the film, but most of the film remained in black and white. I think this would be an interesting effect if applied more fully. Maybe something like this has been done in other films - films that I'm not aware of. Pleasantville comes to mind, but the reason people became colored was not due to an artist painting.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Jour de Fete" at Amazon.com
  • "Late Spring" - With Chishû Ryû, Setsuko Hara, Yumeji Tsukioka; AKA "Banshun".
    Plot Intro: A young woman lives with her father and is very happy taking care of him. He is content to have her around, but his sister (her aunt) starts to poke her nose in and pressures both to have her married. She is very sad, but he tries to encourage her - thinking that it really is better for her. After she leaves, he is a very lonely man.
    Review: Slice of life in Japan. Great photography (B&W). Very good representation of post-war Japan culture. Setsuko Hara is very fetching when she is smiling.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Late Spring" at Amazon.com
  • "The Story of Seabiscuit" - With Shirley Temple, Barry Fitzgerald.
    Plot Intro: The story of one of the greatest horses in history.
    Review: It looked to me like the film included real footage of Seabiscuit mixed in. That made the film better for me. Fitzgerald has always been one of my favorite actors with an Irish accent, and Temple is a legend - though her accent may not have been up to snuff.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Story of Seabiscuit" at Amazon.com
  • "The Third Man" - With Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten.
    Plot Intro: In Vienna after World War II, there are schemes to make money off of the suffering of the people.
    Review: A great film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Third Man" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1948

    "I Remember Mama" - With Irene Dunne, Barbara Bel Geddes, Oscar Homolka, Cedric Hardwicke, Rudy Vallee. Directed by George Stevens.
    Plot Intro: The struggles of an immigrant family.
    Review: A great film. Irene Dunne is great.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "I Remember Mama" at Amazon.com.
  • "I Was A Male War Bride" - With Cary Grant, Ann Sheridan. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: A French soldier must pose as a woman to emigrate to the US.
    Review: A very good film. Cary Grant is good in these kinds of comedy.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "I Was A Male War Bride" at Amazon.com.
  • "Red River" - Western drama with John Wayne, Montgomery Clift, Joanne Dru, Harry Carey. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: A cattle drive from Texas.
    Review: A great western. John Wayne at his best.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Red River" at Amazon.com.
  • "Portrait of Jenny" - With Joseph Cotten, Jennifer Jones, Ethel Barrymore, Lillian Gish. Directed by William Dieterle.
    Plot Intro: An artist is inspired to paint a girl he meets in a park.
    Review: A fantasy. A good movie.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Portrait of Jenny" at Amazon.com.
  • "Sitting Pretty" - Comedy with Clifton Webb, Robert Young, Maureen O'Hara.
    Plot Intro: A mother is desperate to find a nanny, so she places an ad in the paper. Lynn Belvedere responds to the ad.
    Review: Clifton Webb is so good in this kind of part. It's a very good movie.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Sitting Pretty" at Amazon.com
  • "Sorry, Wrong Number" - Suspense thriller with Barbara Stanwyck, Burt Lancaster, Wendell Corey, Ed Begley, William Conrad.
    Plot Intro: A bed-ridden woman finds out that men are planning to kill a nearby woman, and then she gradually realizes they are planning to murder her.
    Review: Very good Stanwyck movie. Lancaster is appropriately intense.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Sorry, Wrong Number" at Amazon.com.
  • "3 Godfathers" - Drama with John Wayne, Pedro Armendáriz, Harry Carey Jr, Ward Bond. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: Three men try to rob a bank. One is shot, but all three flee into the desert. Their main problem is lack of water. The sheriff of the town and the leader of the robbers play a mental game of chess - trying to out-think each other. The fly in the ointment, so to speak, for the robbers is that they find a woman who is giving birth to a boy, and she is related to the sheriff. They become godfathers to the infant boy.
    Review: Kind of interesting version of the story. The story was filmed twice in silent form, and another time in 1929 as "Hell's Heroes" by William Wyler. The Wayne character is the only survivor. The film is dedicated to Harry Carey, and Ford casts Carey's son as one of the robbers.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "3 Godfathers" at Amazon.com
  • "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" - With Humphrey Bogart, Walter Huston, Tim Holt. Directed by John Huston.
    Plot Intro: Three men search for gold in the Sierra Madre mountains.
    Review: Another great movie from John Huston and Humphrey Bogart.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" at Amazon.com.
  • "Whisky Galore" - With Basil Radford, Joan Greenwood. AKA "Tight Little Island".
    Plot Intro: There are 50000 cases of whisky on a stranded ship.
    Review: Great little British comedy.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Whisky Galore" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1947

    "Born to Kill" - With Claire Trevor, Lawrence Tierney, Walter Slezak, Elisha Cook Jr.
    Plot Intro: A muddle-headed killer gets involved with two sisters. One know what he is. The other does not.
    Review: Gradually gripping. Trevor and Cook are very good.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Born to Kill" at Amazon.com.
  • "Cass Timberlane" - With Spencer Tracy, Lana Turner, Zachary Scott, Mary Astor.
    Plot Intro: A middle-aged judge meets a feisty, beautiful young woman. They marry, but his friendships make things complicated.
    Review: Tracy is very good, and Turner at times glows.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Cass Timberlane" at Amazon.com
  • "The Egg and I" - With Fred MacMurray, Claudette Colbert, Marjorie Main, Percy Kilbride.
    Plot Intro: A young couple moves to a farm to raise chickens and collect the eggs. Some of the neighbors (Ma and Pa Kettle) are helpful.
    Review: Claudette Colbert is always great, and it's always fun to see Main and Kilbride..
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Egg and I" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Farmer's Daughter" - With Loretta Young, Joseph Cotten, Ethel Barrymore, Charles Bickford.
    Plot Intro: The daughter of a farmer becomes a housekeeper in the home of a member of Congress.
    Review: One of my favorite films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Farmer's Daughter" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" - With Gene Tierney, Rex Harrison, George Sanders, Nattalie Wood. Directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz.
    Plot Intro: A widow and single-mother moves to the seaside, and she buys a house that she discovers is haunted by the ghost of an old sea captain.
    Review: A classic B&W film with Harrison and Tierney. Also includes a very young Natalie Wood.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" at Amazon.com.
  • "An Ideal Husband" - Drama with Paulette Goddard, Michael Wilding, Diana Wynyard, C. Aubrey Smith, Glynis Johns. Based on a play by Oscar Wilde.
    Plot Intro: A politian is blackmailed, and his best friend helps him out.
    Review: Michael Wilding and Paulette Goddard are very good. I'm used to the 1999 version. Minnie Driver is excellent in that film. The 1947 version is definitely worth watching.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "An Ideal Husband" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'An Ideal Husband' (1999)
  • "It Happened on Fifth Avenue" - Holiday comedy with Don Defore, Ann Harding, Victor Moore, Charles Ruggles, Gale Storm, Edward Brophy, Alan Hale Jr.
    Plot Intro: A homeless man finds shelter in mansions in New York City after the residents go south for the winter. He offers help to another homeless man, and things begin to snowball.
    Review: A little known holiday film. Thoroughly enjoyed this film. Victor Moore is a joy to watch. He gets good lines in the script, but he delivers them in such a unique way that he steals the film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "It Happened on Fifth Avenue" at Amazon.com
  • "Miracle on 34th Street" - Holiday film with Maureen O'Hara, Edmund Gwenn, John Payne, Natalie Wood, William Frawley.
    Plot Intro: A man who thinks he is Kris Kringle is hired to be Santa Claus in the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, and then works at the Macy's store.
    Review: One of my favorite films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Miracle on 34th Street" at Amazon.com.
  • "Sea of Grass" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Melvyn Douglas, Edgar Buchanan, Harry Carey.
    Plot Intro: The tale of a range war between a rancher and homesteaders, and the tale of a lawyer's flirting with his wife.
    Review: The fourth Tracy-Hepburn movie. Kind of odd to see (at least for me) to see Tracy and Hepburn in a western - a three-way romance included. Tracy looks out of place. Almost like he's just talking through. And Hepburn seems stiff in the romance scenes with Douglas. There are some scenes where the name Jim is said so many times that it becomes monotonous.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Sea of Grass" at Amazon.com
  • "Song Of The Thin Man" - Mystery with William Powell, Myrna Loy, Keenan Wynn, Dean Stockwell, Leon Ames, Gloria Grahame, Jayne Meadows, Ralph Morgan.
    Plot Intro: A band leader is killed, and Nick Charles investigates.
    Review: The last Powell-Loy Thin Man movie. Timing is not quite as crisp.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Song Of The Thin Man" at Amazon.com
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man' (1934)
  • My Review of 'After The Thin Man' (1936)
  • My Review of 'Shadow Of The Thin Man' (1941)
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man Goes Home' (1945)
  • Movies of 1946

    "The Big Sleep" - Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Elisha Cook Jr. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: A detective is hired by a rich man to look into a personal matter.
    Review: One of the best detective movies.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Big Sleep" at Amazon.com.

    "The Best Years of Our Lives" - With Frederic March, Myrna Loy, Dana Andrews, Virginia Mayo, Hoagy Carmichael, Harold Russell. Directed by William Wyler.
    Plot Intro: Soldiers coming home from the war.
    Review: One of the great films of the 1940s. Best Picture Academy Award. Harold Russell, a double-amputee, was given an Academy Award.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Best Years of Our Lives" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Falcon's Adventure" - Mystery with Tom Conway, Edward Brophy.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon gets involved in a plot to steal a formula for making industrial diamonds.
    Review: The last of the series. Conway is still good. The film is as good as most of them.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Falcon's Adventure" at Amazon.com.
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1941)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • My review of 'A Date With The Falcon' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon and the Coeds' (1943)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in Mexico' (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1944)
  • "Great Expectations" - With John Mills, Jean Simmons, Alec Guinness. Directed by David Lean. Based on the Charles Dickens book.
    Plot Intro: Pip is an orphan who has a mysterious benefactor.
    Review: A dramatization of the Charles Dickens book.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Great Expectations" at Amazon.com.
  • "It's a Wonderful Life" - With James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Beulah Bondi, Henry Travers, Ward Bond. Directed by Frank Capra.
    Plot Intro: Everything is going bad for the head of the local Savings and Loan. He thinks of committing suicide, but an angel shows him what the world you be like if he never lived.
    Review: A great movie, but most people know that by now.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "It's a Wonderful Life" at Amazon.com.
  • "Never Say Goodbye" - Romantic comedy with Errol Flynn, Eleanor Parker, Lucile Watson, Forrest Tucker.
    Plot Intro: An ex-husband and his daughter try to get their family back together.
    Review: An odd film with lots of obvious logic problems. He has a girlfriend he won't break up with, but he wants to get back together with his wife. He walks with his kid in the park, and then he lets her walk home alone. He climbs over a fence and gets into his wife's home through an unlocked window, and then he leaves it open. If all of this was OK in 1946, it doesn't age well for today.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Never Say Goodbye" at Amazon.com
  • "A Night in Casablanca" - With The Marx Brothers, Sig Rumann.
    Plot Intro: People are looking for a cache of Nazi treasure.
    Review: A parody of "Casablanca" and all its clones. Pretty good.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "A Night in Casablanca" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Yearling" - With Gregory Peck, Jane Wyman, Claude Jarman Jr, Chill Wills, Forrest Tucker, Henry Travers.
    Plot Intro: A boy wants to have a pet, and he gets a life lesson.
    Review: Excellent family film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Yearling" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1945

    "And Then There Were None" - Agatha Christie story
    Plot Intro: People are gradually disappearing.
    Review: Very good dramatization of a classic Agatha Christie story.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "And Then There Were None" at Amazon.com.
  • "Brewster's Millions" - With Dennis O'Keefe, Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson, Gail Patrick, Misha Auer.
    Plot Intro: A soldier returns home from war to find out that he inherited a fortune, but in order to receive it he has to spend part of it in two months without having any assets.
    Review: .
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Brewster's Millions" at Amazon.com
  • "The Falcon in San Francisco" - Mystery with Tom Conway, Edward Brophy.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon arrives in San Francisco, and some people think he is investigating something. After they give him a hard time, he wants to find out what they don't want him to find out.
    Review: Conway is smooth. A low-budget 'B' movie.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Falcon in San Francisco" at Amazon.com.
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1941)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • My review of 'A Date With The Falcon' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon and the Coeds' (1943)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in Mexico' (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "The House of Dracula" - With John Carradine, Lon Chaney Jr, Lionel Atwill, Onslow Stevens.
    Plot Intro: Dracula places his coffin in the basement of a doctor who he hopes can cure him. Wolfman also comes for a treatment. Frankenstein makes his appearance, too.
    Review: Another attempt to come up with a variation on the dracula, wolfman, frankenstein-monster story. This may be the inspiration for the movie 'Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein' - which, if true, we can thank this film.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The House of Dracula" at Amazon.com
  • "Johnny Angel" - With George Raft.
    Plot Intro: An abandoned ship is found, gold is missing, and a pretty stowaway helps uncover the truth for the son of the captain of the ship.
    Review: It takes a while to get going - to the point where I understood the plot. The photography is first-rate. Part of the film is in the film noire style. One scene on the pier is particularly noteworthy. The whole film has blacks that are really black and whites that are really white. At one point I thought they were referencing the movie "Casablanca", since the abandoned ship was from North Africa, and the girl had gotten out of the region without a passport, but I came to like the film somewhat. George Raft is good.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Johnny Angel" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Lost Weekend" - With Ray Milland, Jane Wyman. Directed by Billy Wilder.
    Plot Intro: The problems of an alcoholic.
    Review: Excellent film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Lost Weekend" at Amazon.com.
  • "Spellbound" - With Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: A new member of the staff of a mental institute is found to have some serious mental problems due to thinking that he was involved in the murder of a distinguished psychiatrist.
    Review: The story is not one of the strongest filmed by Hitchcock.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Spellbound" at Amazon.com.
  • "They Were Expendable" - With John Wayne, Robert Montgomery, Donna Reed, Ward Bond. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: A man struggles to handle his responsibilities when World War II breaks out.
    Review: A dramatization of the PT Boat crews' attempts to defend the Philippines when World War 2 breaks out. Pretty good.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "They Were Expendable" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Thin Man Goes Home" - Mystery with William Powell, Myrna Loy, Gloria DeHaven, Anne Revere, Leon Ames, Donald Meek.
    Plot Intro: Nick and Nora try to have a vacation, but they get involved in a murder investigation.
    Review: The Thin Man series is starting to fade, but any Powell-Loy film is worth watching.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Thin Man Goes Home" at Amazon.com
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man' (1934)
  • My Review of 'After The Thin Man' (1936)
  • My Review of 'Shadow Of The Thin Man' (1941)
  • My Review of 'Song Of The Thin Man' (1947)
  • "Without Love" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Keenan Wynn, Lucille Ball, Gloria Grahame.
    Plot Intro: A scientist needs a place to experiment on something needed for the war effort. He becomes caretaker of a widow's unused home. They get married, and she becomes his assistant. Later they fall in love.
    Review: The third of the Tracy-Hepburn films. Some good moments.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Without Love" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1944

    "Arsenic and Old Lace" - With Cary Grant, Josephine Hull, Jean Adair, Raymond Massey, Edward Everett Horton, Peter Lorre, James Gleason. Directed by Frank Capra.
    Plot Intro: A writer's two aunts have a charity going in their own home, and his brother comes home to change everything.
    Review: One of my favorites.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Arsenic and Old Lace" at Amazon.com.
  • "Bathing Beauty" - With Red Skelton, Esther Williams, Basil Rathbone, Donald Meek, Xavier Cugat, Harry James.
    Plot Intro: A newlywed bride thinks her husband is cheating. She goes back to her job at an all woman's college. Her husband follows her.
    Review: Williams is beautiful. The script is kind of brainless. Just a way to show Williams and the big bands.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Bathing Beauty" at Amazon.com
  • "The Conspirators" - With Paul Henried, Hedy Lamarr, Peter Lorre, Sidney Greenstreet, Joseph Calleia.
    Plot Intro: A member of the underground travels to a free port in order to escape mainland Europe to England.
    Review: Lamarr is beautiful. Some of the same storylines as "Casablanca" with some of the same actors. It will trigger comparisons to Casablanca which is a better film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Conspirators" at Amazon.com
  • "The Curse of the Cat People" - With Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Jane Randolph, Ann Carter.
    Plot Intro: A little girl has a special friend who happens to be the dead first wife of her father.
    Review: Sequel of "The Cat People". Classic thriller that builds up to a climax.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Curse of the Cat People" at Amazon.com
  • "Double Indemnity" - With Barbara Stanwyck, Fred MacMurray, Edward G. Robinson. Written and directed by Billy Wilder.
    Plot Intro: A pretty wife talks an insurance agent into an insurance fraud scheme.
    Review: Classic film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Double Indemnity" at Amazon.com.
  • "Experiment Perilous" - With Hedy Lamarr, George Brent, Paul Lukas, Margaret Wycherly.
    Plot Intro: A psychiatrist befriends the wife of a man who he suspects has become off-balance because of jealousy.
    Review: Hedy Lamarr is considered by many to have been the most beautiful woman ever on the screen, and she particularly shines in the movies she made in the 1930s and early 1940s. The movie is suspenseful. Lukas is particularly creepy.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Experiment Perilous" at Amazon.com
  • "The Falcon in Mexico" - With Tom Conway, Martha Vickers.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon is suspected of murder, and he has to find out what's going on with some paintings in order to clear his name.
    Review: Detective stories of the 1930s and 1940s are interesting to me - particularly The Saint, The Falcon, The Thin Man, and Charlie Chan. They are kind of fun.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Falcon in Mexico" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1941)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • My review of 'A Date With The Falcon' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon and the Coeds' (1943)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1945)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "Henry V" - With Laurence Olivier. Screenplay by Laurence Olivier, based on the Shakespeare play. AKA "The Chronicle History of King Henry the Fift with His Battell Fought at Agincourt in France".
    Plot Intro: Henry V, his attempts at war and peace.
    Review: Excellent dramatization.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Henry V" at Amazon.com.
  • "Hail the Conquering Hero" - Eddie Bracken, William Demarest, Franklin Pangborn. Written and directed by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: A man, who was discharged from the army, tries to avoid going home, but he meets a group of Marines.
    Review: A great film by Preston Sturges. One of my favorites. Probably my favorite of all of his.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Hail the Conquering Hero" at Amazon.com.
  • "Laura" - With Gene Tierney, Clifton Webb, Dana Andrews, Vincent Price. Directed by Otto Preminger.
    Plot Intro: A woman is found dead in her apartment, and the police begin investigating.
    Review: One of my favorite films. Excellent.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Laura" at Amazon.com.
  • "Miracle of Morgan's Creek" - With Eddie Bracken, William Demarest, Betty Hutton. Written and directed by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: A girl, with the help of a local man, sneaks out of the house to help entertain the troops. A few weeks later she realizes that she got married and is pregnant. Her friend steps forward to help her with chaotic results.
    Review: Great film by Preston Sturges. One of my favorites.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Miracle of Morgan's Creek" at Amazon.com.
  • "Murder, My Sweet" - Mystery with Dick Powell, Claire Trevor, Anne Shirley, Otto Kruger, Mike Mazurki. Based on Raymond Chandler's "Farewell, My Lovely".
    Plot Intro: A detective gets sucked deeper and deeper into a mystery about a missing woman and a missing jade necklace.
    Review: Excellent detective film with very good performances.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Murder, My Sweet" at Amazon.com
  • "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" - With Spencer Tracy, Robert Walker, Tim Murdock, Dan DeFore, Robert Mitchum, Douglas Cowan, .
    Plot Intro: Soon after Pearl Harbor, B-25 crews take off from aircraft carriers in order to make a surprise attack on Japan.
    Review: The story of James Doolittle's operation in 1942. One of the better war pictures made during World War II.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1943

    "Cabin in the Sky" - With Ethel Waters, Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, Lena Horne, Louis Armstrong, Louis Armstrong, Mantan Moreland, Butterfly McQueen, Bill Bailey, John William Sublett. Directed by Vincent Minnelli.
    Plot Intro: Angels and demons compete for the soul of a man.
    Review: Musical with an all-black cast. Waters and Horne sing. Armstrong plays his trumpet. Moreland nearly pops his eyes. Lots of dancing - including the first recorded moonwalk (by Bailey). Some of the biggest African-American/black/negro stars of the time.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Cabin in the Sky" at Amazon.com.
  • "Five Graves in Cairo" - With Franchot Tone, Ann Baxter, Akim Tamiroff, Eric von Stroheim. Directed by Billy Wilder.
    Plot Intro: There is a British agent in Rommel's headquarters.
    Review: Great film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Five Graves in Cairo" at Amazon.com.
  • "A Guy Named Joe" - With Spencer Tracy, Irene Dunne, Van Johnson, Ward Bond, James Gleason, Lionel Barrymore, Barry Nelson, Esther Williams, Blake Edwards.
    Plot Intro: A hotshot flyer dies heroically, and then his spirit assists a young flyer who falls in love with his former girlfriend.
    Review: I generally like Tracy films, but this one lost me after it had "Joe" destroy a German aircraft carrier - something the Germans never put into operation in World War II. Also, the pub in Britain should have been more pub-like. The melodramatic lines Tracy has to deliver take away from it.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "A Guy Named Joe" at Amazon.com
  • "Keeper of the Flame" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Percy Kilbride, Howard Da Silva, Forrest Tucker. Directed by George Cukor.
    Plot Intro: A national figure dies when he drives off of a bridge. The nation mourns. A reporter decides to write a biography of the man. After he investigates, he finds out that the man's wife could have prevented the accident.
    Review: The second Tracy-Hepburn film. Well photographed. Many have posed ideas of who the film is referring to. Tracy's statement about how political parties work (making us hate each other, capturing the minds of their followers) is still true today.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Keeper of the Flame" at Amazon.com
  • "The Falcon and the Coeds" - Mystery with Tom Conway.
    Plot Intro: Some dead bodies and funny things going on at an all-girls school. The Falcon is drawn into the case.
    Review: Probably not one of the better of the series.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "The Falcon and the Coeds" at Amazon.com.
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1939)
  • My review of 'A Date With The Falcon' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • The Falcon In Mexico (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1945)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "Lassie Come Home" - With Roddy McDowall, Elizabeth Taylor, Donald Crisp, Dame May Whitty, Nigel Bruce, Edmund Gwenn, Elsa Lanchester.
    Plot Intro: A poor family sells their son's prized dog. The dog is taken to Scotland and tries to get home.
    Review: Good family picture with early appearances of McDowall and Taylor.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Lassie Come Home" at Amazon.com
  • "The More the Merrier" - With Jean Arthur, Joel McCrea, Charles Coburn.
    Plot Intro: Three people have to share an apartment during an apartment shortage.
    Review: Very good film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The More the Merrier" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Outlaw" - Western with Jane Russell, Walter Huston, Thomas Mitchell, Jack Buetel. Directed by Howard Hughes
    Plot Intro: Billy the Kid befriends Doc Holliday who claims the Kid stole his horse. Doc takes side with the Kid against Pat Garrett. Doc and the Kid also struggle for the attentions of a local girl named Rio McDonald.
    Review: From what I've read, there's little historical about the film. The film isn't helped by the theme music.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "The Outlaw" at Amazon.com
  • "The Ox-bow Incident" - With Henry Fonda, Dana Andrews, Anthony Quinn. Directed by William Wellman.
    Plot Intro: The story of a lynch mob.
    Review: A great film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Ox-bow Incident" at Amazon.com.
  • "Presenting Lily Mars" - Musical Romance with Judy Garland, Van Heflin, Fay Bainter, Spring Byington. Based on a novel by Booth Tarkington
    Plot Intro: A young woman is obsessed with becoming an actress and a star. She becomes an annoyance to a Broadway director.
    Review: Early Garland movie. Some good singing
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Presenting Lily Mars" at Amazon.com.
  • "Roxie Hart" - With Ginger Rogers, Adolphe Menjou, Nigel Bruce, Phil Silvers, Spring Byington.
    Plot Intro: A woman is arrested for murder. She tries to use the media to increase her fame.
    Review: Based on the play that was portrayed multiple times on the movie screen - including 'Chicago' in 2002. Rogers is great.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Roxie Hart" at Amazon.com
  • "Sahara" - Drama with Humphrey Bogart, Bruce Bennett, J Carroll Naish, Lloyd Bridges, Richard Aherne, Dan Duryea, Kurt Kreuger.
    Plot Intro: An American tank has to head south into the desert in order to reconnect with allied forces.
    Review: Very good war drama. Bogart is excellent. The action is well constructed.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Sahara" at Amazon.com
  • "Sanshiro Sugata" - Written and directed by Akira Kurosawa.
    Plot Intro: A judo expert must meet his girlfriend's father in a match.
    Review: Most of Kurosawa's films that I've seen are the samurai films. This is hand-to-hand combat. Still a very good picture.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Sanshiro Sugata" at Amazon.com.
  • "Thousands Cheer" - With Gene Kelly, Kathryn Grayson, Mary Astor, Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Red Skelton, Eleanor Powell, Ann Sothern, Lucille Ball, Frank Morgan, Lena Horne, Donna Reed.
    Plot Intro: A young soldier wants to start a relationship with the daughter of an officer.
    Review: Lots of stars, some romance, some songs.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Thousands Cheer" at Amazon.com
  • "Watch on the Rhine" - With Bette Davis, Paul Lukas, Geraldine Fitzgerald. Written by Dashiell Hammett, based on the play by Lillian Hellman.
    Plot Intro: A family comes to America under an alias. The husband was a key figure in the resistant movements across Europe. They find out that some of their friends are either killed or captured. At the same time, the husband is recognized and blackmailed.
    Review: Excellent film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Watch on the Rhine" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1942

    "Bambi" - animated film by Disney
    Plot Intro: A fawn has to grow up fast and in the process meets different animals who befriend him.
    Review: Classic animated film. Some overly dramatic scenes, some excellent humorous scenes.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Bambi" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Bogie Man Will Get You" - Comedy-horror with Boris Karloff, Peter Lorre.
    Plot Intro: A young divorcee buys an old inn. The current residents stay on. There are odd goings-on in the basement.
    Review: An odd film. Billed as a comedy-horror. Not very funny. No horror to speak of. The only thing that might be of interest is to see Karloff and Lorre try to act their way through this script.
    Rating: starno starno starno star
  • "The Bogie Man Will Get You" at Amazon.com
  • "Casablanca" - With Humphrey Bogart, Sidney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, Claude Rains, Ingrid Bergman. Directed by Michael Curtiz.
    Plot Intro: A man arrives with his wife in Casablanca. He is a major leader in the Resistance. They are looking for letters that will allow them to go to Lisbon from where they can go escape the Germans. A bar owner acquires the letters. The wife of the Resistance leader knows the bar owner very well.
    Review: One of the greatest films of all time. Bogart is great. The film wins the Best Film Oscar, and Michael Curtiz wins an Academy Award as Best Director. Greenstreet, Lorre, Rains, and Bergman are great.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Casablanca" at Amazon.com.
  • "Crossroads" - With William Powell, Basil Rathbone, Hedy Lamarr, Claire Trevor, Margaret Wycherly, Felix Bressart, Sig Rumann.
    Plot Intro: A French diplomat is being blackmailed for crimes allegedly committed while he had amnesia.
    Review: I'm used to seeing Powell in romantic comedies or light-weight detective mysteries. This is a little more serious, and the plot not very credible. Powell is my favorite actor of all time, so it still was a pleasure to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Crossroads" at Amazon.com
  • "A Date With The Falcon" - With George Sanders, Wendy Barrie, James Gleason, Allen Jenkins.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon is continually interrupted in his plans to get married, because a group of criminals thinks he's onto them.
    Review: Sanders is good in his second Falcon movie, and Gleason is good as always.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "A Date With The Falcon" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1941)
  • My Review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon and the Coeds' (1943)
  • My Review of 'The Falcon in Mexico' (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1945)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "The Falcon's Brother" - With George Sanders, Tom Conway, Jane Randolph.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon investigates what happened to his brother, and then, with his brother's help, investigates a fashion magazine.
    Review: Sanders and Conway were brothers in real life. Fun to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Falcon's Brother" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Gay Falcon' (1941)
  • My Review of 'A Date With The Falson' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon and the Coeds' (1943)
  • My Review of 'The Falcon in Mexico' (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1945)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "The Gay Sisters" - With Barbara Stanwyck, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Donald Crisp, Gig Young, Nancy Coleman, Gene Lockhart.
    Plot Intro: The three Gaylord sisters have been in probate court for almost 30 years because of a feud between the oldest of the three with a man who disputes the will.
    Review: Somewhat of a fluff piece that has a very fast resolution.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Gay Sisters" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Glass Key" - With Brian Donlevy, Veronica Lake, Alan Ladd, Joseph Calleia, William Bendix.
    Plot Intro: A local mobster becomes enamored of a politician's daughter, but she has eyes only for his right-hand man.
    Review: Based on the book by Dashiell Hammett. Ladd and Lake sizzle. I've never thought of Lake as a great actress, but she does well enough here. This is the kind of film on which Ladd made his reputation.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Glass Key" at Amazon.com
  • "I Married a Witch" - With Frederic March, Veronica Lake, Robert Benchley, Cecil Kellaway.
    Plot Intro: A few hundreds of years ago, a man is involved in convicting a witch. His descendant marries her after she finds a new body.
    Review: It seems like March is just walking through. No emotion. Lake is about the same as she is in other movies. Benchley and Kellaway are great, as usual.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "I Married a Witch" at Amazon.com.
  • "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" - With Robert Montgomery and Carole Lombard. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: Two people who are madly in love find out that they weren't ever married due to a technicality. Madcap hilarity begins there.
    Review: Probably the only pure comedy directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Somewhat dated, but anything with Lombard or Montgomery in it is worth watching.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Palm Beach Story" - Joel McCrea, Claudette Colbert, Mary Astor, Rudy Vallee; written and directed by Preston Sturges
    Plot Intro: A woman wants to prove that she can earn a living on her own and be more successful than her husband.
    Review: Excellent Preston Sturges. The scene in the railroad car is one of the best in any of his films. I laugh no matter how many times I've seen it.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Palm Beach Story" at Amazon.com.
  • "To Be or Not to Be" - Jack Benny, Carole Lombard. Directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
    Plot Intro: A stage company in Warsaw has to survive the German invasion during World War II.
    Review: Very funny. Jack Benny is great. Remade by Mel Brooks.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "To Be or Not to Be" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Tuttles of Tahiti" - With Charles Laughton.
    Plot Intro: The head of a large Tahitian family has trouble with gambling and debts - to the detriment of his faimly.
    Review: Entertaining but somewhat annoying.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Tuttles of Tahiti" at Amazon.com
  • "Woman of the Year" - With Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Fay Bainter, Reginald Owen, William Bendix. Directed by George Stevens.
    Plot Intro: A woman involved in politics suggests that baseball should be suspended during the war. A sports columnist writes a column critical of her. They meet, fall in love, and get married.
    Review: First of the Tracy-Hepburn movies. Some good moments.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Woman of the Year" at Amazon.com
  • "You Were Never Lovelier" - Romantic musical with Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Adolphe Menjou, Xavier Cugat & His Orchestra.
    Plot Intro: Two of the three younger daughters of a hotel owner want to get married, but they cannot get married until the older sister does. Their father is tired of all the complaining, and he gets a dancer to woo the older daughter. The usual romantic-movie-misunderstanding happens.
    Review: Astaire is still in his prime, and Hayworth is very good. Xavier and his orchestra are fun to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "You Were Never Lovelier" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1941

    "Bathing Beauty" - Romantic comedy with Red Skelton, Esther Williams, Basil Rathbone, Xavier Cugat, Harry James, Donald Meek.
    Plot Intro: A newly married couple is split up when a woman accuses him of being her husband.
    Review: Not a great movie. Lots of color. Lots of songs. Lots of dancing. Still ends up being a mediocre film.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Bathing Beauty" at Amazon.com
  • "Blossoms in the Dust" - Drama with Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon.
    Plot Intro: A Texas miller sweeps a Wisconsin woman off of her feet and takes her to Texas. After a difficult childbirth she is told that she can never give birth again. Several years later her son is killed in an accident. She eventually starts an orphanage and campaigns for the rights of children.
    Review: Based on the true story of Edna Gladney. Very good.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Blossoms in the Dust" at Amazon.com
  • "Citizen Kane" - Drama with Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Ruth Warrick, Agnes Moorehead. Directed by Orson Welles. Screenplay by Orson Welles and Herman J. Mankiewicz.
    Plot Intro: An old man dies alone with the enigmatic last word "Rosebud". A newspaper reporter interviews various people in order to find out what the significance of that word is.
    Review: A veiled portrayal of the life of William Randolph Hearst. Unfortunately, Hearst was still alive at the time, and he was still powerful and influential. On top of that, the film seems to ridicule Hearst's girlfriend, Marion Davies -- something that Hearst bitterly resented. The special features on the film make the case that even though some details of the Kane character's life may relate to Hearst, many of the details relate to the early life of Orson Welles.
           The film is considered by many to be the best movie of all time. Orson Welles had not directed a film before "Citizen Kane". He had been involved in stage productions and on radio. So he came into the film (screenplay and direction) with a lot of new ideas. The framing and the angles of the filming were different from any film up to that time. It is considered by many to be about 30 years ahead of its time. Nominated in nine categories for Academy Awards, but it only won for the screenplay.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Citizen Kane" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde" - With Spencer Tracy, Miriam Hopkins, Ingrid Bergman, Lana Turner.
    Plot Intro: Strange things are happening in London. They are related to the experiments of a chemist.
    Review: Good early horror film. Remake of a 1931 film with Frederic March. The change from Jekyll to Hyde is not as drastic. The difference is kind of like Kent-Superman.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dumbo"
    Plot Intro: The adventures of a baby elephant in a small circus.
    Review: One of Disney Studios's animated classics. But the idea of using fire during a clown act in a circus tent is pretty ridiculous.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Dumbo" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Gay Falcon" - With George Sanders, Wendy Barrie, Allen Jenkins.
    Plot Intro: The Falcon investigates jewel thieves.
    Review: Sanders is good in his first film as the Falcon.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Gay Falcon" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Brother' (1942)
  • My review of 'A Date With The Falcon' (1942)
  • My review of 'The Falcon In Mexico' (1944)
  • My review of 'The Falcon in San Francisco' (1945)
  • My review of 'The Falcon's Adventure' (1946)
  • "Here Comes Mr. Jordan" - With Robert Montgomery, Claude Rains, Edward Everett Horton.
    Plot Intro: A boxer who plays sax on the side dies sooner than he should.
    Review: Excellent film. Remade as "Heaven Can Wait" with Warren Beatty.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Here Comes Mr. Jordan" at Amazon.com.
  • "How Green Was My Valley" - With Maureen O'Hara, Walter Pigeon, Donald Crisp, Roddy McDowall. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: A family in a small Welsh mining town struggles.
    Review: Another great film by John Ford.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "How Green Was My Valley" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Lady Eve" - With Henry Fonda, Barbara Stanwyck, Charles Coburn, Eugene Pallette, Eric Blore. Written and directed by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: A pretty woman who is a member of a gang of con-artists first scams a rich young man, and then she falls in love with him.
    Review: Excellent Sturges film. One of his best.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Lady Eve" at Amazon.com.
  • "Life Begins for Andy Hardy" - With Andy Rooney, Lewis Stone, Judy Garland, Patricia Dane.
    Plot Intro: Andy graduates from high school, and he goes to New York City to try to begin his adult life. He learns some lessons.
    Review: Another Hardy family picture. Garland looks great. She looked like a kid in most movies before this. And she does a great job delivering her lines.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Life Begins for Andy Hardy" at Amazon.com
  • "The Maltese Falcon" - Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor, Sidney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre. Written by John Huston, based on the novel by Dashiell Hammett. Directed by John Huston.
    Plot Intro: Sam Spade's partner is killed, and people are asking about some sort of bird.
    Review: One of the greatest of all time. An early example of film noir (if not the first). "The stuff dreams are made of."
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Maltese Falcon" at Amazon.com.
  • "Manpower" - Drama with Edward G Robinson, George Raft, Marlene Dietrich, Alan Hale, Ward Bond, Eve Arden.
    Plot Intro: Electric company line workers deal with dangerous conditions, and they encounter several women.
    Review: Interesting combination of stars.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Manpower" at Amazon.com.
  • "Sergeant York" - With Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Joan Leslie. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: A back-woods farmer is drafted into the US Army during World War I.
    Review: Excellent film based on the true story of the most decorated soldier of World War I. One of Cooper's best.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Sergeant York" at Amazon.com.
  • "Shadow of The Thin Man" - Mystery with William Powell, Myrna Loy.
    Plot Intro: Murder at a race track, and Nick and Nora are investigating.
    Review: Any Powell-Loy movie is worth watching. One of the best pairings of all time. The first two films are the best of the series.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Shadow of The Thin Man" at Amazon.com
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man' (1934)
  • My Review of 'After The Thin Man' (1936)
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man Goes Home' (1945)
  • My Review of 'Song Of The Thin Man' (1947)
  • "Sullivan's Travels" - With Joel McCrea, Veronica Lake, William Demarest. Written and directed by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: A movie director wants to direct a major drama. He runs away and becomes mistaken for a criminal.
    Review: Excellent Sturges film. One of his best.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Sullivan's Travels" at Amazon.com.
  • "That Hamilton Woman" - With Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, Alan Mowbray, Gladys Cooper.
    Plot Intro: A beautiful young woman meets Lord Admiral Horatio Nelson in Naples.
    Review: Based on the true story of the affair between Nelson and the Lady Hamilton.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "That Hamilton Woman" at Amazon.com
  • "Whistling In The Dark" - Mystery-comedy with Red Skelton, Conrad Veidt, Ann Rutherford, Virginia Grey, Eve Arden.
    Plot Intro: A radio show star called "The Fox" is kidnapped and forced to come up with a plan to kill a man on a plane to New York City.
    Review: Typical "B" movie type mystery comedy from the 1940s. Not very good.
    Rating: starhalf starno starno star
  • "Whistling In The Dark" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1940

    "Andy Hardy Meets Debutante" - With Andy Rooney, Lewis Stone, Ann Rutherford, Judy Garland.
    Plot Intro: Judge Stone has to go to New York City on business, and he takes his family. Andy becomes enamored with a debutante.
    Review: Another Hardy family picture. It would be interesting to know how many times Rooney has to say, "I'm older now. I've learned a lot. I'll never make that mistake again." I think he said it 2-3 times in this film.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Andy Hardy Meets Debutante" at Amazon.com
  • "The Bank Dick" - Comedy with W.C. Fields, Cora Witherspoon, Una Merkel, Franklin Pangborn, Shemp Howard, Grady Sutton.
    Plot Intro: A bank customer accidentally captures a bank robber and is offered the job of security guard at the bank.
    Review: One of WC Fields's best. One of my all-time favorites.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Bank Dick" at Amazon.com.
  • "Beyond Christmas" - Romance with Harry Carey, C. Aubrey Smith, Charles Winninger, Maria Ouspenskaya, Helen Vinson, Richard Carlson.
    Plot Intro: Three old men throw wallets into the street to see if they can find honest people who will bring them back. A man and a woman bring them back Then the men die in a plane crash, and their spirits try to help the couple stay together.
    Review: Kind of an odd holiday movie.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Beyond Christmas" at Amazon.com
  • "Christmas in July" - Comedy with Dick Powell, William Demarest, Franklin Pangborn. Written and directed by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: An inveterate optimist is tricked into thinking he had won a slogan contest.
    Review: Early Preston Sturges movie. Sturges's movies are some of the best comedies. This was an early effort.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Christmas in July" at Amazon.com.
  • "Comrade X" - Romantic comedy with Clark Gable, Hedy Lamarr, Oscar Homolka, Felix Bressart, Eve Arden, Sig Ruman.
    Plot Intro: A reporter is blackmailed by a man to take his daughter out of the USSR. She is not very willing to go.
    Review: Odd script written at a time when Germany wasn't at war with the USSR or the US. Lamarr is beautiful, as always, but she has had better material to work with, and she might not have been up to the challenge of this character. Gable plays the same character in all his movies, so he is OK.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Comrade X" at Amazon.com
  • "Foreign Correspondent" - Suspense-drama with Joel McCrea, Laraine Day, Herbert Marshall, George Sanders, Robert Benchley, Edmund Gwenn, Harry Davenport. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: A news correspondent tries to expose enemy agents in Britain on the eve of World War 2.
    Review: Excellent Hitchcock drama.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Foreign Correspondent" at Amazon.com.
  • "Gaslight" - Mystery with Anton Walbrook, Diana Wynyard, Frank Pettingell.
    Plot Intro: A husband is trying to drive his wife crazy while he's searching for something.
    Review: Walbrook is sufficiently creepy and overbearing to make the film very effective. Remade four years later with James Mason and Ingrid Bergman.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Gaslight" at Amazon.com
  • "Go West" - Comedy with The Marx Brothers.
    Plot Intro: The Marx Brothers go west and save the day.
    Review: The Marx Brothers were losing steam.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Go West" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Grapes of Wrath" - Drama with Henry Fonda, Jane Darwell, John Carradine. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: Poor people trek across from the Dust Bowl to California.
    Review: One of the greatest pictures of all time.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Grapes of Wrath" at Amazon.com.
  • "His Girl Friday" - Comedy with Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy. Directed by Howard Hawks.br> Plot Intro: A newspaper editor uses every trick in the book to lure his ex-wife back into her job as a reporter.
    Review: Machine delivery of great dialogue. A must see.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "His Girl Friday" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Long Voyage Home" - Drama with John Wayne, Barry Fitzgerald, Thomas Mitchell, Ward Bond, Mildred Natwick. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: A crew on a merchant marine ship is trying to get home at the dangerous time when U-Boats may be somewhere nearby.
    Review: Not one of the better John Ford films. The film has many of the people from "The Quiet Man" and "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon". Wayne's attempt at an accent doesn't help.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "The Long Voyage Home" at Amazon.com.
  • "Mortal Storm" - With James Stewart, Margaret Sullivan, Robert Young, Frank Morgan, Robert Stack, Ward Bond, Maria Ouspenskaya.
    Plot Intro: A tale of the effects of the Nazi political system on a family through the 1930s.
    Review: Somewhat of a propaganda film that attempts to inform the American public about what Nazi Germany is really like. Very little information was available about what was going on. This film attempts to fill the gap. The bad guys are suitably evil. The "opening of the eyss" of one of the characters at the end of the film seems out of place.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Mortal Storm" at Amazon.com
  • "The Philadelphia Story" - With Cary Grant, Kathryn Hepburn, James Stewart. Directed by George Cukor.
    Plot Intro: The ex-husband of a well-to-do woman arrives with a reporter and photographer to attend her wedding.
    Review: Great performances. Great film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Philadelphia Story" at Amazon.com.
  • "Pinocchio"
    Plot Intro: A wooden marionette is brought to life by a fairy with the promise that he might become a real boy.
    Review: One of Disney Studio's animated classics.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Pinocchio" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Saint's Double Trouble" - With George Sanders, Bela Lugosi, Helene Whitney, Jonathan Hale.
    Plot Intro: The Saint has to deal with crimes executed by his look-alike doppelganger.
    Review: Sanders is good again in his fourth Saint movie.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Saint's Double Trouble" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Saint in London'(1939)
  • My review of 'The Saint Takes Over' (1940)
  • "The Saint Takes Over" - With George Sanders, Wendy Barrie, Jonathan Hale.
    Plot Intro: The Saint attempts to clear the name of a friend who was framed.
    Review: Sanders is good in his fifth Saint movie.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Saint Takes Over" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'The Saint in London'(1939)
  • My review of 'The Saint's Double Trouble' (1940)
  • "The Sea Hawk" - With Errol Flynn, Claud Rains, Allen Hale, Donald Crisp, Gilbert Roland, Una O'Connor.
    Plot Intro: A privateer in the service of Queen Elizabeth captures and sinks a Spanish ship, but the ship contains a high Spanish official, his daughter, and slaves chained to the oars of the galley. He is later captured, escapes, and finds out who the traitors are.
    Review: High quality costumes and cast help this film overcome some points in the script that are hard to understand (Spanish slave galleys). The film was made at the time when England was fighting the Battle of Britain, to which there are parallels to the Spanish Armada and to Napoleon.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Sea Hawk" at Amazon.com.
  • "Sky Murder" - With Walter Pidgeon, Donald Meek.
    Plot Intro: Nick Carter investigates murders occurring in flight.
    Review: One of those B movies that were being churned out. Pidgeon is good. The story is hard to follow.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Sky Murder" at Amazon.com
  • "Waterloo Bridge" - With Robert Taylor, Vivien Leigh, Maria Ouspenskaya, C. Aubrey Smith, Lucile Watson, Virginia Field.
    Plot Intro: A soldier leaves his fiance in London when he goes to war. During his absense, she faces challenges that are difficult for her to deal with when he comes back.
    Review: Somewhat of a melodramatic, soap opera type story. Taylor is intense, and Leigh is sympathetic.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Waterloo Bridge" at Amazon.com
  • "The Westerner" - Western with Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Forrest Tucker, Chill Wills.
    Plot Intro: A young man is arrested and brought before Judge Roy Bean for horse thieving. The cowboy talks his way into Bean's confidence. He becomes a defender of a group of sod busters.
    Review: Another teaming of Cooper and Brennan. Good entertainment. A good 30s-40s western.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Westerner" at Amazon.com

  • AD

    Movies of 1939

    "Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever" - Comedy with Mickey Rooney, Lewis Stone, Ann Rutherford.
    Plot Intro: Andy had girl trouble and then meets the substitute teacher.
    Review: Andy Hardy movies are fun to watch.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever" at Amazon.com
  • "At the Circus" - With The Marx Brothers, Margaret Dumont.
    Plot Intro: Money is stolen at a circus, and the Marx Brothers try to help get it back.
    Review: The Marx Brothers are always fun to watch, but this film isn't as good as some of the earlier ones.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "At the Circus" at Amazon.com.
  • "Destry Rides Again" - James Stewart, Marlene Dietrich, Misha Auer, Brian Donlevy, Una Merkel, Billy Gilbert.
    Plot Intro: Lawlessness is rampant in a western town. The son of a famous lawman comes to town. He doesn't make a good first impression, because he doesn't believe in carrying a gun.
    Review: A great film. Stewart maybe at his skinniest. Very funny. One of my favorites. If you can stand Marlene Dietrich's singing, it will be one of your favorites, too.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Destry Rides Again" at Amazon.com.
  • "Each Dawn I Die" - Drama with James Cagney, George Raft, George Bancroft.
    Plot Intro: A newspaper reporter is causing too many problems for those in power, so they frame him. He ends up in prison, and gradually becomes hardened.
    Review: Well-made movie about everyone's fear: that government is out of control, and people in power use that power for their own ends rather than for the good of the people.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Each Dawn I Die" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Four Feathers"
    Plot Intro: A man must prove he's not a coward during the Sudan uprising.
    Review: A great film. Again it's a story about the time period of the British empire.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Four Feathers" at Amazon.com.
  • "Gone With the Wind" - With Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, Leslie Howard, Olivia DeHavilland, Thomas Mitchell, Hattie McDaniel.
    Plot Intro: Life in the south before and during the Civil War in relation to a family that owns the plantation Tara.
    Review: One of the greatest films of all time. Vivian Leigh is perfect as Scarlett, and Gable is perfect as Rhett. There are also a great many performances from the supporting cast. However, the portrayal of slavery takes away from the beauty of the film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Gone With the Wind" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" - With Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara.
    Plot Intro: A hunchback who lives in the Notre Dame Cathedral saves a lady from from execution.
    Review: A great film with a young Maureen O'Hara and Charles Laughton.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" at Amazon.com.
  • "Lady of the Tropics" - With Robert Taylor, Hedy Lamarr, Joseph Schildkraut.
    Plot Intro: A young man traveling through Asia meets a local woman. They fall in love, but she is the obsession of a local businessman.
    Review: Lamarr is beautiful, and Taylor is intense. Basically a soap opera, so it's not for everyone.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Lady of the Tropics" at Amazon.com
  • "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" - With James Stewart, Jean Arthur, Claude Rains. Directed by Frank Capra.
    Plot Intro: A young man is selected to take the place of a senator who had been part of the machine.
    Review: One of the greatest films of all time.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" at Amazon.com.
  • "Nick Carter, Master Detective" - With Walter Pidgeon, Rita Johnson, Henry Hull, Donald Meek.
    Plot Intro: The master detective investigates what is happening in an airplane factory.
    Review: One of those B movies that were being churned out. Pidgeon is good. The story is hard to follow.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Nick Carter, Master Detective" at Amazon.com
  • "The Saint in London" - With George Sanders, Sally Gray, George McLeod, Carl Jaffe.
    Plot Intro: The Saint investigates a plot involving millions in foreign currency.
    Review: Sanders is cool and debonair. He has some action scenes as well. Sanders's third Saint movie.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Saint in London" at Amazon.com.
  • My review of 'The Saint's Double Trouble' (1940)
  • My review of 'The Saint Takes Over' (1940)
  • "Stagecoach" - With John Wayne, Thomas Mitchell, Claire Trevor, Andy Devine, John Carradine, Donald Meek. Directed by John Ford.
    Plot Intro: A stagecoach tries to go through Indian territory.
    Review: Excellent film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Stagecoach" at Amazon.com.
  • "Topaze" - With John Barrymore, Myrna Loy.
    Plot Intro: A teacher loses his job when one of his students lies to his mother about him - and she creates a fuss. It turns out that the student's father is desperate for a scientist to endorse his product and hires the teacher. Things get out of control.
    Review: Kind of dull until the last third of the film. Then it picks up.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Topaze" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1938

    "The Adventures of Robin Hood" - With Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone, Claude Rains, Eugene Pallette, Alan Hale. Directed by Michael Curtiz.
    Plot Intro: Robin Hood, Maid Marion, the Sheriff of Knottingham, and King John.
    Review: One of the greatest films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Adventures of Robin Hood" at Amazon.com.
  • "Blondes At Work" - Mystery with Glenda Farrell.
    Plot Intro: During an investigation a detective tries to keep the facts of the case secret from his wife, a newspaper reporter.
    Review: Fourth of nine "Torchy Blane" films, seven of which of which starred Farrell. She resembled Ginger Rogers, and she has enough spunk to carry the character off.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Blondes At Work" at Amazon.com
  • "Boys Town" - With Spencer Tracy, Mickey Rooney, Henry Hall, Jonathan Hale.
    Plot Intro: A priest starts a home for boys which develops into a set of buildings called "Boys Town". A boy comes to the town who is torn between being true to his friends and to his brother.
    Review: Hollywood took the true life story of Father Flanagan, and they built a story around it. Rooney and Tracy are great. Tracy received an Academy Award.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Boys Town" at Amazon.com
  • "Bringing Up Baby" - With Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant. Directed by Howard Hawks.
    Plot Intro: There is a missing dinosaur and a leopard on the loose. There is a paleontologist and a ditzy heiress.
    Review: Early screwball comedy. One of Hawks's best.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Bringing Up Baby" at Amazon.com.
  • "Carefree" - Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers.
    Plot Intro: A psychiatrist/psychoanalyst (not sure which) falls in love with one of his patients.
    Review: Not as good as previous efforts, but still worth the effort. Includes "Change Partners (and Dance)".
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Carefree" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Lady Vanishes" - With Michael Redgrave, Dame May Whitty, Margaret Lockwood. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: An elderly woman vanishes while traveling on a train. She is missed by some, but others deny her very existence.
    Review: Very good early Hitchcock espionage mystery.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Lady Vanishes" at Amazon.com.

  • "Love Finds Andy Hardy" - Romantic comedy with Mickey Rooney, Lewis Stone, Judy Garland, Lana Turner, Ann Rutherford.
    Plot Intro: Andy's date for a dance has to go out of town. Then he finds another date. Then he has two dates to the same dance. Then he has no date.
    Review: Rooney is great. Garland's singing is stunning. Turner is beautiful.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Love Finds Andy Hardy" at Amazon.com
  • "Man-Proof" - Romance with Myrna Loy, Franchot Tone, Rosalind Russell, Walter Pidgeon, Ruth Hussey.
    Plot Intro: A young woman is so confident of her relationship to a single man that she is shocked when he marries someone else, and she is oblivious that she is a better match for someone else.
    Review: Not very pleasant to watch. Over-confident, stubborn people who are immature and are basically throwing a tantrum is never easy to watch. But the film has Loy, Tone, Russell, Pidgeon, and Hussey, so it is worth watching in that respect.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Man-Proof" at Amazon.com.
  • "Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm" - With Shirley Temple, Randolph Scott, Jack Haley, Gloria Stuart, Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, William Demarest.
    Plot Intro: Due to a misunderstanding, the chosen winner of a contest gets away. The radio producer is desperate to find her.
    Review: Temple was around 10 years old when this film was released. She is still near her best. The film includes some dancing with Robinson. Demarest is the heavy/villain.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm" at Amazon.com
  • "Sidewalks of London" - With Charles Laughton, Vivien Leigh, Rex Harrison.
    Plot Intro: A street performer discovers a pretty young girl who can dance and sing. She gets discovered by a song writer, and then she becomes a sensation on stage - leaving the street performer behind.
    Review: Very good film about the vagaries of life in the entertainment industry.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Sidewalks of London" at Amazon.com
  • "Test Pilot" - With Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy, Lionel Barrymore, Marjorie Main.
    Plot Intro: A test pilot has to land in the middle of a field. He meets the farmer's daughter, and they fall in love. After a while, she cannot handle when he flies.
    Review: Myrna Loy is beautiful. Gable is great. Tracy is kind of reserved, allowing Gable to shine, but he has some good moments.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Test Pilot" at Amazon.com
  • "A Yank At Oxford" - With Robert Taylor, Lionel Barrymore, Maureen O'Sullivan, Vivien Leigh, Edmund Gwenn.
    Plot Intro: An athelete from the middle of the United States begins his studies at Oxford. He meets a girl.
    Review: Taylor's character is a little hard to take. Not sure if that is the impression Americans gave the world at the time. O'Sullivan is sweet as always.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "A Yank At Oxford" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1937

    "Big City" - Spencer Tracy, Luise Rainer, William Demarest.
    Plot Intro: The struggles of a cab company that is being harrassed by a competitor.
    Review: Pretty good acting with an illogical script.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Big City" at Amazon.com.
  • "Black Legion" - Drama with Humphrey Bogart, Dick Foran, Ann Sheridan, Samuel S Hinds.
    Plot Intro: A man who expects to be promoted is disappointed with an Italian man is promoted instead. Embittered, he joins a group called The Black Legion, a group that intimidates immigrants. They do more than intimidate, resorting to murder.
    Review: Thinly veiled portrayal of the KKK and organizations like them who think they are patriots but are working outside the law and the Constitution.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Black Legion" at Amazon.com.
  • "Broadway Melody of 1938" - With Eleanor Powell, Robert Taylor, George Murphy, Buddy Ebsen, Sophie Tucker, Judy Garland, Raymond Walburn, Billy Gilbert, Robert Benchley.
    Plot Intro: A girl wants to get into a Broadway play, and she knows how to train horses.
    Review: Another Robert Taylor and Eleanor Powell film. Garland is 15. Entertaining.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Broadway Melody of 1938" at Amazon.com
  • "Damsel In Distress" - Fred Astaire, Joan Fontaine, George Burns, Gracie Allen.
    Plot Intro: A lady is wooed by an American dancer.
    Review: Good Astaire movie. "Things Are Looking Up", "A Foggy Day", "Nice Work If You Can Get It".
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Damsel In Distress" at Amazon.com.
  • "A Day at the Races" - With Marx Brothers, Maureen O'Sullivan, Margaret Dumont.
    Plot Intro: The owner of a local spa is being pressured to sell. She gets help from the Marx Brothers and a horse.
    Review: One of the better of the Marx Brothers.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "A Day at the Races" at Amazon.com.
  • "Fire Over England" - With Laurence Olivier, Vivien Leigh, Raymond Massey, Flora Robinson, Leslie Banks, Robert Newton, James Mason.
    Plot Intro: The Spanish are planning to send their Armada against England.
    Review: Good vehicle for Olivier and Leigh. Robinson and Massey are great, too.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Fire Over England" at Amazon.com
  • "Prisoner of Zenda" - With Ronald Colman.
    Plot Intro: A ruler is kidnapped, and a look-a-like must take his place.
    Review: A classic.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Prisoner of Zenda" at Amazon.com.
  • "Shall We Dance" - Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore.
    Plot Intro: Romance between a ballet dancer and a stage performer.
    Review: Another great Astaire-Rogers film. "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off", "They Can't Take That Away from Me", "Shall We Dance"..
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Shall We Dance" at Amazon.com.
  • "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"
    Plot Intro: A princess is banished by an evil queen. She ends up living with seven dwarfs.
    Review: The classic animated feature film. Great.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" at Amazon.com.
  • "They Gave Him A Gun" - With Spencer Tracy, Franchot Tone, Gladys George, Edgar Dearing.
    Plot Intro: A young bookkeeper joins the army and goes to France where he becomes a hero, but then he uses his sharpshooting ability to become the head of a gang. He goes to prison to prove himself to his wife. His wife takes refuge with their best friend when her husband's gang tries to kill her.
    Review: I would say this is formulaic, but the story goes down so many roads/paths that it doesn't fit any other movie I've seen.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "They Gave Him A Gun" at Amazon.com
  • "Topper" - With Cary Grant, Constance Bennett, Roland Young, Billie Burke, Alan Mowbray.
    Plot Intro: Two young socialites die in a car crash, and they try to do a good deed by helping Topper.
    Review: The first comedy for Grant. He seems like a natural Grant and Bennett are great.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Topper" at Amazon.com.
  • "Tovarich" - With Claudette Colbert, Charles Boyer, Basil Rathbone. Plot Intro: Two members of the Russian nobility end up as servants in the home of a rich American family.
    Review: One of my favorites.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Tovarich" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1936

    "After The Thin Man" - Mystery with William Powell, Myrna Loy, James Stewart, Joseph Calleia, Asta, Mrs Asta.
    Plot Intro: The murder of one of Nora's family is investigated by Nick Charles, her husband.
    Review: A lot of fun to watch. Contains a lot of humor, suspense. Stewart in a relatively early appearance. Calleia plays another bad guy well.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "After The Thin Man" at Amazon.com
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man' (1934)
  • My Review of 'Shadow Of The Thin Man' (1941)
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man Goes Home' (1945)
  • My Review of 'Song Of The Thin Man' (1947)
  • "The Charge of the Light Brigade" - With Erroll Flynn, Olivia DeHavilland, Donald Crisp, Nigel Bruce, Patric Knowles, David Niven.
    Plot Intro: The British are in India in 1856. The Light Brigade charges at enemy forces.
    Review: Very good. A romanticizing of the British empire.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Charge of the Light Brigade" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dracula's Daughter" - With Otto Kruger, Gloria Holden, Margueritte Churchill.
    Plot Intro: Dracula's daughter takes care of her father's body, and then she tries to resist being like him.
    Review: An early psychological version of the vampire story.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Dracula's Daughter" at Amazon.com
  • "The Ex-Mrs. Bradford" - With William Powell, Jean Arthur, James Gleason, Eric Blore.
    Plot Intro: A mystery writer causes her husband, a surgeon, so much trouble that they get divorced. She tries to get back into his life, but a series of murders occur.
    Review: William Powell is always fun to watch. One of my favorite actors. The film is a little bit of 'Thin Man' and 'Gay Divorcee' (without the dancing and music). May have been filmed at the beginning of the Seabiscuit excitement. It's interesting that they backed the horses into the gate - rather than leading them in nose first like they have done for a while now.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Ex-Mrs. Bradford" at Amazon.com
  • "Follow the Fleet" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Randolph Scott.
    Plot Intro: A sailor tries to convince his former partner to get back together with him.
    Review: Some good moments for Astaire-Rogers. Includes "I'm Putting All My Eggs in One Basket", "Let's Face the Music and Dance".
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Follow the Fleet" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Glorious Hussy" - With Joan Crawford, Robert Taylor, Lionel Barrymore, Franchot Tone, Melvyn Douglas, James Stewart, Beulah Bondi, Louis Calhern, Sidney Toler, Gene Lockhart.
    Plot Intro: Andrew Jackson is running for president, and a campaign begins to demean his wife. When she dies, they begin a gossip campaign against a young woman who is like a daughter to Jackson.
    Review: Loosely based on the "Petticoat affair" and the central figure, Margaret O'Neill Eaton, also known as Peggy Eaton. The events occur before the Civil War when states rights was a major issue, and people were loyal more to their state than to the United States (basically an early form of treason). Crawford is very good.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Glorious Hussy" at Amazon.com
  • "The Great Ziegfeld" - With William Powell, Myrna Loy, Frank Morgan, Fanny Brice, Ray Bolger.
    Plot Intro: Florence Ziegfeld has some good ideas for productions on stage.
    Review: A Hollywoodized version of the story of one of the great producers of the stage.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Great Ziegfeld" at Amazon.com.
  • "Fury" - With Spencer Tracy, Sylvia Sidney, Bruce Cabot, Edward Ellis, Walter Brennan.
    Plot Intro: Falsely accused of a crime and nearly killed by a lynch mob, a man wants revenge.
    Review: Tracy was nominated for an Oscar, and it was well-deserved. Some of the action in the court-room is not credible (though I'm certainly not an expert in that area). Otherwise, a great film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Fury" at Amazon.com
  • "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town" - With Gary Cooper, Jean Arthur. Directed by Frank Capra.
    Plot Intro: A young man inherits a fortune. His life gets more complicated.
    Review: One of the great Frank Capra films.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town" at Amazon.com.
  • "My Man Godfrey" - With William Powell, Carole Lombard, Alice Brady, Gail Patrick, Eugene Pallette, Misha Auer.
    Plot Intro: A man down on his luck is hired as a butler in a house that has some eccentric residents.
    Review: One of the best films ever. Lombard and Powell at their best. Excellent group of supporting actors.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "My Man Godfrey" at Amazon.com.
  • "Riffraff" - With Spencer Tracy, Jean Harlow, Una Merkel, Joseph Calleia, Mickey Rooney.
    Plot Intro: A tuna fisherman tries to become the head of the union, but he pushes too hard. He ends up homeless - a hobo. His wife tries to help but ends up in prison where she gives birth.
    Review: The screenwriters write themselves into a corner, and then try to fix it in the last five minutes. Harlow's character says, "Yes. I'll go to prison." Tracy is good. At times Harlow is luminous. Mickey Rooney was 15.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Riffraff" at Amazon.com.
  • "Swing Time" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers.
    Plot Intro: A performer becomes involved with an aspiring dancer.
    Review: One of the great Astaire-Rogers films. "The Way You Look Tonight", "A Fine Romance", "Bojangles of Harlem", "Never Gonna Dance", "The Way You Look Tonight", "A Fine Romance".
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Swing Time" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1935

    "Bonnie Scotland" - With Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, James Finlayson.
    Plot Intro: Stan and Ollie go to Scotland, because Stan is mentioned in the will of an estate, and somehow they join the British army and end up in India.
    Review: May be one of the best by Laurel and Hardy.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Bonnie Scotland" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Bride of Frankenstein" - Horror with Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester.
    Plot Intro: Marry Shelley creates the Frankenstein myth, and the Bride is added.
    Review: Excellent follow-up to the original film. A classic. Lanchester and Karloff are great.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Bride of Frankenstein" at Amazon.com
  • My review of 'Frankenstein' (1931)
  • "Broadway Melody of 1936" - With Eleanor Powell, Jack Benny, Robert Taylor, Una Merkel, Buddy Ebsen, Vilma Ebsen.
    Plot Intro: A girl from Albany wants to get into a Broadway play, but the producer doesn't take her seriously.
    Review: A pretty good film with some pretty good musical numbers.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Broadway Melody of 1936" at Amazon.com
  • "Dante's Inferno" - With Spencer Tracy, Clair Trevor.
    Plot Intro: An up-and-coming young man marries a young woman, and her father tries to show his son-in-law that he's losing his way.
    Review: Dated. The long sequence where Dante's Inferno is 'reenacted' take away from the movie.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Dante's Inferno" at Amazon.com
  • "Mark of the Vampire" - With Lionel Barrymore, Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, Jean Hersholt, Donald Meek.
    Plot Intro: After a nobleman is killed, an expert in the occult is called. He says it was vampires.
    Review: Big name actors and good production values make this an interesting film.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Mark of the Vampire" at Amazon.com
  • "Murder Man" - With Spencer Tracy, James Stewart, Virginia Bruce, Lionel Atwill, William Demarest.
    Plot Intro: A newspaper report, known as 'Murder Man' because he reports big murder cases, is reporting the trial of the man who was instrumental in the death of his father.
    Review: Tracy is a little hard to believe. Short.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Murder Man" at Amazon.com.
  • "A Night at the Opera" - Marx Brothers, Kitty Carlisle, Allan Jones, Sig Rumann, Margaret Dumont. Written by George S. Kaufman, Morrie Syskind.
    Plot Intro: Four men try to get a young opera singer into a major opera production. Hilarity and mayhem ensue.
    Review: May be the best film by the Marx Brothers.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "A Night at the Opera" at Amazon.com.
  • "She Married Her Boss" - Romantic drama with Claudette Colbert, Melvyn Douglas.
    Plot Intro: A woman makes herself so indispensible to the boss - who she loves - that when she decides to move on and take another job, he proposes marriage to her. She accepts, but she finds that it's a different situation to work for him as his assistant than it is to be his wife.
    Review: Colbert is always good.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "She Married Her Boss" at Amazon.com
  • "The 39 Steps" - With Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
    Plot Intro: A man is drawn into an espionage ring attempting to assassinate a prominent figure.
    Review: A good early Hitchcock movie. Robert Donat is very good.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The 39 Steps" at Amazon.com.
  • "Top Hat" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore.
    Plot Intro: A star of stage disturbs a woman on the floor below with his tap dancing.
    Review: Great songs, great dancing. May be their best. Includes "No Strings", "Isn't This a Lovely Day?", "Top Hat, White Tie and Tails", "Cheek to Cheek".
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Top Hat" at Amazon.com.
  • "Whipsaw" - With Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy.
    Plot Intro: After a jewel theft, a woman is tailed by a federal agent. She knows he's an agent right away. They play a cat and mouse game.
    Review: Pretty good early Tracy - and Loy - film.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Whipsaw" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1934

    "Babes In Toyland" - Comedy with Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Charlotte Henry.
    Plot Intro: Barnaby will foreclose on the home of the Old Woman in the Shoe unless Bo Peep consents to marry him. Ollie Dee and Stanley Dum try to help.
    Review: Classic film with some good scenes by Laurel and Hardy.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Babes In Toyland" at Amazon.com
  • "Born To Be Bad" - Drama with Loretta Young, Clark Gable, Henry Travers.
    Plot Intro: A single mother is trying to scrape by when he son gets hit by a truck driven by the company's owner.
    Review: Made before the morality standards were established that affected the film industry for decades.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Born To Be Bad" at Amazon.com
  • "Dames" - Musical with Dick Powell, Zazu Pitts, Joan Blondell, Guy Kibbee, Hugh Herbert. Busby Berkeley is involved.
    Plot Intro: A multi-millionaire decides to divide his fortune before he dies. He goes to New York City to visit his relatives in order to see if they are worthy.
    Review: Powell and Blondell are very good. Good music, good singing by Powell. Pitts and Herbert may make it hard for some people to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Dames" at Amazon.com
  • "David Copperfield" - With Freddie Bartholemew, Basil Rathbone, WC Fields. Directed by George Cukor. AKA "The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, & Observation of David Copperfield the Younger".
    Plot Intro: A boy's father dies, and his mother remarries.
    Review: The old Charles Dickens story as a vehicle for Bartholemew.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "David Copperfield" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Gay Divorcee" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton, Eric Blore.
    Plot Intro: A woman wants a divorce, and she attempts to set herself up in a compromising position.
    Review: One of the best of the Astaire-Rogers movies. Includes "A Needle in a Haystack", "Night and Day", "The Continental".
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Gay Divorcee" at Amazon.com.
  • "It Happened One Night" - With Clark Gable, Claudette Colbert, Walter Connolly.
    Plot Intro: An heiress stubbornly plans to marry her fiance, against her father's wishes. She runs away. Includes instructions on how to hitch-hike.
    Review: A great film. Received Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Screenplay Academy Awards - a first.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "It Happened One Night" at Amazon.com.
  • "It's a Gift" - Comedy with W.C. Fields, Kathleen Howard, Baby LeRoy.
    Plot Intro: A store-owner buys an orange grove in California, totally surprising his family.
    Review: One of Fields's best. One of my favorite films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "It's a Gift" at Amazon.com.
  • "Lawless Frontier" - Western with John Wayne, Sheila Terry, George 'Gabby' Hayes.
    Plot Intro: A cowboy's parents are killed, and he works to capture the bandit and bring him to justice.
    Review: A good early John Wayne western.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Lawless Frontier" at Amazon.com
  • "The Merry Widow" - Romantic comedy with Jeanette MacDonald, Maurice Chevalier, Edward Everett Horton, Una Merkel, Sterling Holloway, Donald Meek. Directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
    Plot Intro: A widow who owns just about everything in the miniscule country of Marshovia goes to Paris to find love, trigering a national emergency.
    Review: One of the best films of all times. At times it is laugh-out-loud funny. Very good singing by Chevalier and MacDonald.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Merry Widow" at Amazon.com
  • "The Scarlet Pimpernel" - With Leslie Howard, Merle Oberon, Raymond Massey, Nigel Bruce.
    Plot Intro: While some of the nobility are being executed, a member of the British nobility takes on the personna of a fop in order to smuggle them out of France.
    Review: Howard, Massey, and Oberon are excellent in this costume drama.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Scarlet Pimpernel" at Amazon.com
  • "The Show Off" - With Spencer Tracy, Clara Blandick, Henry Wadsworth.
    Plot Intro: A blow hard marries a great girl. Her mother doesn't like him. He has a lot of plans, and all of them turn out wrong until the end of the film.
    Review: Not one of Tracy's best.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Show Off" at Amazon.com.
  • "Tarzan the Ape Man" - Drama with Johnny Weismuller, Maureen O'Sullivan, C. Aubrey Smith, Neil Hamilton.
    Plot Intro: Explorers want to find the elephant burial ground where there is a wealth of ivory tusks to harvest.
    Review: The first Weismuller Tarzan film, and it's a good one.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Tarzan the Ape Man" at Amazon.com
  • "The Thin Man" - With William Powell, Myrna Loy, Maureen O'Sullivan. Based on the book by Dashiell Hammett.
    Plot Intro: The father of a young woman disappears, and poeple start dying. Her father is the main suspect. A retired police detective is drawn into the investigation.
    Review: One of my favorite films. Powell and Loy at their best. No other team can match them.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Thin Man" at Amazon.com.
  • My Review of 'After The Thin Man' (1936)
  • My Review of 'Shadow Of The Thin Man' (1941)
  • My Review of 'The Thin Man Goes Home' (1945)
  • My Review of 'Song Of The Thin Man' (1947)
  • "Twentieth Century" - John Barrymore, Carole Lombard, Walter Connolly. AKA "20th Century".
    Plot Intro: A director who is down on his luck, tries to convince an actress to be in his new show.
    Review: Excellent comedy. Carole Lombard is one of my favorite actresses.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Twentieth Century" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1933

    "The Devil's Brother" - With Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy; James Finlayson, Thelma Todd. AKA "Fra Diavolo" or "Fra Diabolo".
    Plot Intro: A highway thief poses as a nobleman to find out where they keep their money. He gains the companionship of two bumbling oafs.
    Review: One of my favorite Laurel and Hardy films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Devil's Brother" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dr. Mabuse" - AKA "The Testament of Dr. Mabuse" or "Dr. Mabuse's Ghost".
    Plot Intro: Dr. Mabuse's spirit comes back to control major crime in a major city.
    Review: German language (with subtitles). Last German-language film directed by Fritz Lang before he fled Germany for the United States.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Dr. Mabuse" at Amazon.com
  • "Duck Soup" - With The Marx Brothers, Margaret Dumont.
    Plot Intro: The country of Fredonia is under attack.
    Review: Some think this is the best Marx Brothers film. I like "A Night at the Opera" best. "Duck Soup" has obvious references to what was going on in Europe at the time. "Hail Fredonia!"
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Duck Soup" at Amazon.com.
  • "Employees' Entrance" - Drama with Loretta Young, Warren William, Wallace Ford.
    Plot Intro: An overbearing manager of a department store causes disruption in the lives of all those who work for him.
    Review: Made before the morality standards changed the film industry for decades.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Employees' Entrance" at Amazon.com
  • "Flying Down To Rio" - With Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Dolores DelRio.
    Plot Intro: A band leader takes his band to Rio de Janeiro to follow the woman he loves.
    Review: The first of the Astaire-Rogers team. Their movies got better later.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Flying Down To Rio" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Invisible Man" - With Claude Rains, Gloria Stuart.
    Plot Intro: A scientist discovers a way to make himself invisible. It kind of goes to his head.
    Review: A very good horror film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Invisible Man" at Amazon.com.
  • "King Kong" - With Fay Wray.
    Plot Intro: Explorers find an unknown island that has a huge secret.
    Review: A very good early horror film. The claymation animation was taken to a new level, fingerprints and all.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "King Kong" at Amazon.com.
  • "Ladies They Talk About" - With Barbara Stanwyck.
    Plot Intro: The girlfriend of a mobster is torn between the mobster and a popular preacher.
    Review: Stanwyck is very good as a hard-edged, scheming girl.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Ladies They Talk About" at Amazon.com
  • "Lady For A Day" - Comedy-drama with Warren William, May Robinson, Guy Kibbee, Walter Connolly, Jean Parker. Based on a Damon Runyon story. Directed by Frank Capra.
    Plot Intro: 'Apple' Annie, a street begger finds out that her daughter is coming from Spain with her fiancé and his father, the Count. Her friend, the head of the local gang, depends on her for his good luck, so he decides to help her pose as a society matron.
    Review: Good early dramedy. Warner William could have been a little better.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Lady For A Day" at Amazon.com
  • "Midnight Mary" - Drama with Loretta Young, Ricardo Cortez, Franchot Tone, Andy Devine, Una Merkel.
    Plot Intro: A young jobless woman connects with mob-types, ends up in jail, meets a rich young man.
    Review: Loretta Young is beautiful in this early film, and she is very effective in the part A good movie.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Midnight Mary" at Amazon.com
  • "Mystery at the Wax Museum" - With Lionel Atwill, Fay Wray, Glenda Farrell.
    Plot Intro: One of the owners of a wax museum is injured during a fire at the museum. He reopens it after recovering, but something weird is going on.
    Review: Good early thriller. Black & White.
    Rating: starstarhalf starhalf star
  • "Mystery at the Wax Museum" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Power and the Glory" - With Spencer Tracy, Colleen Moore, Ralph Morgan, Helen Vinson. Screenplay by Preston Sturges.
    Plot Intro: The story of a railroad tychoon at the end of the 1800s.
    Review: The story is that Sturges took his story idea to William K Howard and then presented him with a completed script - which Howard filmed with few changes. It was also claimed that Sturges very loosely based the story on C.W. Post. Some have claimed that some techniques of the film were used by Orson Welles in 'Citizen Kane'.
    Rating: starstarhalf starhalf star
  • "The Power and the Glory" at Amazon.com.
  • "She Had to Say Yes" - Drama with Loretta Young, Lyle Talbot, Regis Toomey, Winnie Lightner.
    Plot Intro: A clothing company sets up its secretarial pool to go on dates with big customers for date rape and sexual abuse.
    Review: Not the most acceptable subject in these times.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "She Had to Say Yes" at Amazon.com
  • "When Ladies Meet" - With Myrna Loy, Robert Montgomery, Frank Morgan, Ann Harding, Alice Brady.
    Plot Intro: The wife meets the other woman. They don't know who each is, but they come to like each other.
    Review: A 1930s soap opera in movie form. Like all soap operas, the story puts people in a moral dilemma, and in this case it is the "other woman". The viewer gets the chance to think about what they would do in a similar situation. Montgomery, Loy, and Harding are very good. Brady plays her usual ditzy character, which is fun to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "When Ladies Meet" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1932

    "The Hatchet Man" - Drama with Edward G Robinson, Loretta Young.
    Plot Intro: The enforcer for a Tong gang has to kill his best friend and then raise his friend's daughter.
    Review: Young and Robinson play Chinese with all the makeup. The costumes and set decoration are very good.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Film Title" at Amazon.com
  • "Horse Feathers" - With Marx Brothers, Thelma Todd.
    Plot Intro: The head of a college needs to win the big football game.
    Review: An early effort of the Marx Brothers.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Horse Feathers" at Amazon.com.
  • "Lawyer Man" - Drama with William Powell, Joan Blondell.
    Plot Intro: An independent lawyer becomes so successful that he is offered a partnership in a major firm. He finds out that accepting the partnership was a bad move.
    Review: William Powell is one of my favorite actors. He is always great to watch. A young and energetic Blondell was a good addition as well. The story could have been better.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Lawyer Man" at Amazon.com
  • "Movie Crazy" - With Harold Lloyd, Constance Cummings.
    Plot Intro: A clumsy midwesterner gets a letter from a Hollywood studio offering him a screen test.
    Review: The great silent star, Harold Lloyd, has some great scenes. There are several scenes that are laugh-out-loud funny. Some may seem cliche now, but they were probably fresh in 1932. Very enjoyable.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Movie Crazy" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Mummy" - With Boris Karloff.
    Plot Intro: An ancient grave is found in Egypt. It contains a mummy and a scroll. An archaeologist reads the scroll, and the mummy comes back to life.
    Review: Very good early horror film.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Mummy" at Amazon.com.
  • "New Morals For Old" - With Robert Young, Lewis Stone.
    Plot Intro: A son wants to study art in Paris. The daughter has an affair with a married man. The father dies. New morals.
    Review: Made before the establishment of the Hays Code.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "New Morals For Old" at Amazon.com
  • "Penguin Pool Murder" - Mystery with Edna May Oliver, James Gleason.
    Plot Intro: The body of a stockbroker is found at the zoo near the penguins.
    Review: Oliver's character is a lot like Agatha Christie's Miss Marple who made her first appearance in 1930. Gleason is great as always.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Penguin Pool Murder" at Amazon.com
  • "Play Girl" - Drama with Loretta Young, Winnie Lightner, Norman Foster, Guy Kibbee.
    Plot Intro: A shop girl is wooed by a young man who lies to her. It turns out he doesn't have a job, and the only money he has is from gambling.
    Review: Early Loretta Young film.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Play Girl" at Amazon.com
  • "Tarzan, the Ape Man" - Drama with Johnny Weismuller, Maureen O'Sullivan. Based on the book by Edgar Rice Burroughs.
    Plot Intro: A man is discovered living in the remote jungle of Africa.
    Review: A very good movie which was the beginning of a series. The book series is very good, too.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Tarzan, the Ape Man" at Amazon.com.
  • "They Call It Sin" - Drama with Loretta Young, George Brent, Una Merkel, Louis Calhern.
    Plot Intro: A church organist finds out she was abandoned by her mother. She goes to New York City to make her way on Broadway.
    Review: Loretta Young is beautiful. Una Merkel is humorous.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "They Call It Sin" at Amazon.com
  • "20,000 Years in Sing Sing" - Drama with Spencer Tracy, Bette Davis, Lyle Talbot, Louis Calhern.
    Plot Intro: A tough, young criminal gains some wisdom in prison before his girlfriend's life is endangered after a car crash.
    Review: Tracy and Davis are great in maybe the only pairing on the big screen.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "20,000 Years in Sing Sing" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1931

    "City Lights" - With Charles Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill, Florence Lee, Harry Myers. Written and Directed by Charles Chaplin.
    Plot Intro: The Tramp tries to help a blind woman he loves.
    Review: One of the greatest silent films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "City Lights" at Amazon.com
  • "Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde" - With Frederick March, Miriam Hopkins.
    Plot Intro: Strange things are happening in London. They are related to the experiments of a chemist.
    Review: Good early horror film. Remade in 1941 with Spencer Tracy. I actually like this version better. Hyde's makeup is definitely simian-like (the shape of his head, hair, and teeth). March had problems with his teeth (kept spitting, and hard to talk). But overall, the tranformation from Jekyll to Hyde is more drastic than the 1941 version. The way Jekyll/Hyde puts his concoction together is interesting. He puts it together as if he was working on an ice cream sundae, where it wouldn't matter how much of each item he used.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde" at Amazon.com.
  • "Dracula" - With Bela Lugosi. AKA "Drácula".
    Plot Intro: A man takes a business trip to a remote area of Eastern Europe. The local people warn him to turn back, because his business is with a Count Dracula. Soon after, Dracula moves to England.
    Review: Lugosi is very effective. Probably the best early horror film. Very-well made, atmospheric.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Dracula" at Amazon.com
  • "Frankenstein" - With Boris Karloff.
    Plot Intro: A scientist discovers a way to create life.
    Review: A classic horror movie. Recently restored. "He's alive!" Of course, Frankenstein is the doctor who creates the monster. The monster is Frankenstein's monster. My theory is that as science makes discoveries, authors and script-writers will find a way to posit how that discovery could turn into something evil: Chemistry - Dr. Jekyl and The Invisible Man; genetic engineering - Jurassic Park; organ implants - Coma. "Frankenstein" involves surgery.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Frankenstein" at Amazon.com.
  • My review of 'The Bride of Frankenstein' (1935)
  • "Little Caesar" - With E.G. Robinson, Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
    Plot Intro: The rise of a thug to the leader of a gang.
    Review: A good early talkie.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Little Caesar" at Amazon.com.
  • "Monkey Business" - Marx Brothers, Thelma Todd.
    Plot Intro: The brothers stow away on an ocean liner.
    Review: The Marx Brothers are always fun.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Monkey Business" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Ruling Voice" - Drama with Walter Huston, Loretta Young.
    Plot Intro: The daughter of a mobster comes home from school in Europe. She is engaged to be married, and she asks her father what he does for a living. This leads to a crisis of conscience in the mobster.
    Review: Huston is the main character in this film. It is interesting to see these actors when they were so young.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Ruling Voice" at Amazon.com
  • "The Smiling Lieutenant" - Musical with Maurice Chevalier, Claudette Colbert, Miriam Hopkins, Charles Ruggles. Directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
    Plot Intro: A lieutenant is chosen by the princess to be her husband. Both need to make adjustments.
    Review: Fun to watch. Chevalier and Colbert are great. The standards of the time (of how men and women relate to each other) have changed since this film, but the film is still worth watching - partly to be reminded that things have changed so much, and partly to watch Colbert and Chevalier.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Smiling Lieutenant" at Amazon.com.
  • "Susan Lenox - Her Rise and Fall" - Drama with Greta Garbo, Clark Gable, Jean Hersholt, Alan Hale.
    Plot Intro: A woman runs away from her cruel uncle, encounters a man she falls in love with, and then has to run away again from her uncle who finds her.
    Review: Kind of a soap opera that has a good ending in the last 5 seconds.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Susan Lenox - Her Rise and Fall" at Amazon.com
  • "Ten Cents a Dance" - With Barbara Stanwyck, Ricardo Cortez.
    Plot Intro: A dancer at a dance parlor is torn between her unreliable boyfriend and a nice rich boyfriend.
    Review: Very early Barbara Stanwyck film. She plays a sweet young girl. At the end of the film she shows her spirit.
    Rating: starstarhalf starno star
  • "Ten Cents a Dance" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1930

    "All Quiet on the Western Front"
    Plot Intro: Disillusionment in the German army during World War I.
    Review: Pacifist World War I movie about German soldiers. Powerful
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "All Quiet on the Western Front" at Amazon.com.
  • "Animal Crackers" - Comedy with Marx Brothers, Margaret Dumont.
    Plot Intro: A valuable painting is stolen, but there are plenty of copies flying around.
    Review: Pretty funny Marx Brothers effort. A little more sophisticated than "The Cocoanuts." Hooray for Captain Spalding.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Animal Crackers" at Amazon.com.
  • "Hell's Angels" - Drama with Jean Harlow. Directed by Howard Hughes.
    Plot Intro: Action in the air and on the ground during World War I.
    Review: The way the film ended was surprisingly modern. I had the feeling that it was way ahead of its time. Very impressive.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Hell's Angels" at Amazon.com.
  • "Monte Carlo" - Romantic comedy with Jeanette MacDonald, Jack Buchanan, Zasu Pitts. Directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
    Plot Intro: A woman leaves her fiance at the altar and goes to Monte Carlo to try her luck.
    Review: Another romance with great singing by MacDonald.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Monte Carlo" at Amazon.com
  • "Rain or Shine" - With Joe Cook, Louise Fazenda, Tom Howard.
    Plot Intro: A young woman tries to keep a circus running after the death of her father.
    Review: The film features Joe Cook who was a remarkable Vaudeville talent. He also ended up on Broadway for a time, but had to retire when he was diagnosed with Parkinsons. Skilled at tightrope walking, juggling, and comedy, he would have been a force on early TV. The film is worth viewing just to see Cook at his height.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Rain or Shine" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1929

    "Blackmail" - Suspense with Anny Ondra, Sara Allgood, Charles Paton. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Hitchcock adapted the movie's script from a play.
    Plot Intro: A young woman who wants to have a good time is wooed by a man into his apartment where he attacks her. She defends herself, and he ends up dead. She has two problems. One is that her old boyfriend is a police officer, and the other is that a man outside the building guesses what happened.
    Review: An early talkie. Part silent, part sound. The film still has the Hitchcock touches that his fans eventually came to expect.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "Blackmail" at Amazon.com
  • "The Cocoanuts" - With the Marx brothers, Margaret Dumont.
    Plot Intro: Chaos during the Florida land boom of the late 1920s.
    Review: The first Marx Brothers film. Different from the others. More stage-bound.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "The Cocoanuts" at Amazon.com.
  • "Hell's Heroes" - Drama with Charles Bickford, Raymond Hatton.
    Plot Intro: Four men attempt to rob a bank. One is killed, and the others flee - even though one is injured. Later they find a woman in a covered wagon who is about to give birth. She dies, and they become the defacto parents or godfathers to the infant boy.
    Review: Later remade as "3 Godfathers" (1948). An interesting version with differences. In this version all four men are dead by the end, and the last of them brings the baby to a church celebrating Christmas, and then he dies. Two silent versions of the story were also filmed.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Hell's Heroes" at Amazon.com
  • "Love Parade" - Romantic comedy with Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Lillian Roth, Eugene Pallette.
    Plot Intro: The ruler of a small nation has to find a consort/mate or her country will be in crisis.
    Review: Good singing, but it has a dated script.
    Rating: starstarno starno star
  • "Love Parade" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1928

    "The Battle of the Sexes" - With Jean Hersholt, Phyllis Haver, Belle Bennett, Sally O'Neill.
    Plot Intro: A gold digger sets her sights on a happily married middle-aged man.
    Review: In spite of obvious differences to today, and despite being a black-and-white silent film, the film holds up.
    Rating: starstarstarhalf star
  • "The Battle of the Sexes" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Cameraman" - With .
    Plot Intro: A young man tries to be a cameraman in order to be close to the woman he loves.
    Review: One of the great silent films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Cameraman" at Amazon.com
  • "The Circus" - Romantic comedy with Charlie Chaplin, Merna Kennedy. Written and directed by Charles Chaplin.
    Plot Intro: A man is mistaken for a thief. As he runs away from the pursuit, he ends up in the circus and becomes a hit with the crowd.
    Review: One of the great silent films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Circus" at Amazon.com
  • "Speedy" - With Harold Lloyd.
    Plot Intro: A young man tries to save the horse-drawn trolleys.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Speedy" at Amazon.com
  • "Steamboat Bill, Jr" - With Buster Keaton, Tom McGuire, Ernest Torrence.
    Plot Intro: The son of a steamboat captain returns home to help his father.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Steamboat Bill, Jr" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1927

    "College" - With Buster Keaton, Anne Cornwall, Flora Bramley, Harold Goodwin.
    Plot Intro: A nerdy college student tries to become an athlete in order to impress a girl.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "College" at Amazon.com
  • "The Kid Brother" - With Harold Lloyd.
    Plot Intro: The timid son of a sheriff tries to win the respect of his tough father - and to win the affections of the girl he loves.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Kid Brother" at Amazon.com
  • "Wings" - A silent film with Clara Bow, 'Buddy Rogers', Gary Cooper.
    Plot Intro: Action and some romance with World War I fighters.
    Review: World War I fighter plane action with Gary Cooper. Good airplane action. Won the first Best Picture Academy Award.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Wings" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1926

    "Bardleys the Magnificent" - Romantic drama with John Gilbert.
    Plot Intro: A French nobleman is challenged by one of his friends to snag the daughter of a nobleman - one who is totally resistant to the friend's charms.
    Review: Drama with sword-fighting, a trial, a gallows, costumes. Well-made.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Bardleys the Magnificent" at Amazon.com
  • "The General" - With Buster Keaton, Marion Mack, Glen Cavender. Written and Directed by Buster Keaton.
    Plot Intro: Union spies hijack a Confederate train known as "The General", but Johnnie Gray chases them down.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The General" at Amazon.com
  • "The Son of the Sheik" - A silent film with Rudolph Valentino
    Plot Intro: The son of the sheik falls in love with a dancer.
    Review: A Rudolph Valentino classic.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Son of the Sheik" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1925

    "The Freshman" - Comedy with Harold Lloyd.
    Plot Intro: A freshman wants to be popular, and he'll do anything.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Freshman" at Amazon.com
  • "The Gold Rush" - With Charles Chaplin, Mack Swain, Tom Murray. Written and Directed by Charles Chaplin.
    Plot Intro: The Tramp is swept up in the Alaskan gold rush.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Gold Rush" at Amazon.com.
  • "Seven Chances" - Comedy with Buster Keaton.
    Plot Intro: A businessman finds out that he can inherit seven million dollars if he marries by 7 p.m. on his 27th birthday. Problem is that his birthday is taht day.
    Review: A very funny film. Laugh-out-loud funny.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Seven Chances" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1924

    "Sherlock Jr" - With Buster Keaton, Kathryn McGuire, Joe Keaton. Directed by Buster Keaton.
    Plot Intro: A movie projectionist determines to find out who set him up to be accused as a thief.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Sherlock Jr" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Thief of Bagdad" - Romantic adventure with Douglas Fairbanks Sr. Directed by Raoul Walsh.
    Plot Intro: A thief in the city of Bagdad steals the heart of a princess.
    Review: Excellent silent film. Huge, extremely high sets, and it looks like there are thousands in the film. Very impressive.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Thief of Bagdad" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1923

    "Our Hospitality" - With Buster Keaton, Joe Roberts, Joe Keaton, Natalie Talmadge. Directed by Buster Keaton.
    Plot Intro: A young man falls in love with a woman whose family are enemies of his family.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Our Hospitality" at Amazon.com.
  • "Safety Last!" - With Harold Lloyd, Mildred Davis.
    Plot Intro: A store worker has to compete in a challenge he set up for others to do.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Safety Last" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1922

    "Cops" - With Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline, Virginia Fox. Written and Directed by Buster Keaton.
    Plot Intro: A series of mistakes ends with the whole police force of the town chasing a young man.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "Cops" at Amazon.com.
  • "Phantom" - Silent drama with Alfred Abel; Directed by FW Murnau.
    Plot Intro: A young man becomes enamored with a young woman, and he gradually becomes involved in shady activities - being led by his sister's boyfriend.
    Review: Directed by the man who also directed "Nosferatu" (1922). Thought to be lost, a good copy was found, and work was done to restore it. A stylish film, interesting to watch.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Phantom" at Amazon.com
  • Movies of 1921

    "The Idle Class" - With Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance. Written and Directed by Charles Chaplin.
    Plot Intro: The Tramp is mistaken for a wealthy husband at a costume party.
    Review: Chaplin plays the Tramp and the rich husband. One of the greatest silent-era films. Some scenes on a golf course. Timeless comedy.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Idle Class" at Amazon.com
  • "The Kid" - With Charlie Chaplin, Edna Purviance, Jackie Coogan. Written and Directed by Charles Chaplin.
    Plot Intro: The Tramp cares for an orphan.
    Review: One of the greatest silent-era films. Timeless.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Kid" at Amazon.com
  • "Seven Years Bad Luck" - With Max Linder.
    Plot Intro: A young man - who is frequently drunk - is convinced that he will get seven years bad luck after breaking a mirror.
    Review: Funny and entertaining. Some good sight gags.
    Rating: starstarstarno star
  • "Seven Years Bad Luck" at Amazon.com.
  • "The Sheik" - A silent film with Rudolph Valentino
    Plot Intro: An Englishwoman is abducted by an Arabian Sheik.
    Review: A Rudolph Valentino classic.
    Rating: starstarstarstar
  • "The Sheik" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1920

    "The Mark of Zorro" - Romantic adventure with Douglas Fairbanks Sr.
    Plot Intro: A son returns from Spain and finds that California has changed for the worse. He portrays himself as a fop, but he is the vigilante Zorro.
    Review: Very good early silent.
    Rating: starno starstarno star
  • "The Mark of Zorro" at Amazon.com.
  • Movies of 1915

    "Birth of a Nation" - With Lillian Gish. Directed by D.W. Griffith.
    Plot Intro: Families are divided during the war, and the South is dominated by blacks after the war.
    Review: This film is all it takes to totally tarnish the reputation of Griffith. A travesty of a portrayal of slavery, and the way the Ku Klux Klan is portrayed is so inaccurate that it makes the film hard to watch.
    Rating: starno starno starno star
  • "Birth of a Nation" at Amazon.com.

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