Pre-Code Movies on TCM in April 2020

Happy (?) April, everyone. The good news–

Uh

Anyway, there are some pre-Code movies playing on our favorite cable network this month, lots of good picks for you to enjoy in between bouts of standing at your window and gazing longingly at the outside world.

With the cancellation of the 2020 TCM Film Festival, the channel has decided to make it a virtual fest instead by showing movies on their network with introductions culled from previous years’ presentations. The full listing of the schedule is here, and includes pre-Code classics like Red-Headed Woman, Baby Face (with a new must-see Bruce Goldstein introduction), and Double Harness, plus Night Flight.

As I am currently at home with two small children and no longer have the assistance of childcare, my attendance at the virtual festival will be iffy. But I’m happy they’re doing something, even if I’m certain my cable provider will probably block Double Harness out of some weird sense of cosmic irony.

For those of you who see me at the festival, you know I usually have a set of pre-Code pins to hand out. I’ve gone ahead and finished my 2020 pins. For anyone who pledges to become one of my Patrons over at Patreon can have one sent to them. Pledge $2 and get one pin, $5 for both. Be sure that you have your address entered on Patreon and it’s available for me to see for me to send you these pins. The pins will be sent out as soon as your first payment processes. Here are the designs for this year:

 
Meanwhile, for those of you who can: watch movies, enjoy movies, stay inside and relax.

Pre-Code Movies on TCM in April

Please note:

  • All times listed here are Eastern Standard. This schedule is subject to change (like if someone dies or the world continues to end – you know how it is).
  • Plot descriptions and casts lists below come from TCM. See the full listings for the month here.
Date & Time Film

4/2,
1:00 PM

You Can’t Buy Everything (1934)

A scorned woman dreams of revenge on the man who betrayed her.

Dir:  Charles F. Riesner Cast:  May Robson , Jean Parker , Lewis Stone .

BW- 82 mins,

4/3,
6:00 AM

Emma (1932)

A housekeeper faces unexpected snobbery when she marries her boss.

Dir:  Clarence Brown Cast:  Marie Dressler , Richard Cromwell , Jean Hersholt .

BW- 71 mins, CC,

4/3,
10:30 AM

Panama Flo (1932)

An engineer makes a thieving entertainer work off her debts as a housekeeper at his jungle mining camp.

Dir:  Ralph Murray Cast:  Helen Twelvetrees , Robert Armstrong , Charles Bickford .

BW- 73 mins,

4/4,
12:00 PM

The Kennel Murder Case (1933)

Society sleuth Philo Vance investigates a murder tied to a Long Island dog show.

Dir:  Michael Curtiz Cast:  William Powell , Mary Astor , Eugene Pallette .

BW- 73 mins, CC,

4/5,
6:00 AM

Dinner at Eight (1933)

A high-society dinner party masks a hotbed of scandal and intrigue.

Dir:  George Cukor Cast:  Marie Dressler , John Barrymore , Wallace Beery .

BW- 111 mins, CC,

4/9,
6:00 AM

Hold Your Man (1933)

A hard-boiled babe and a con man wear down each other’s rough edges.

Dir:  Sam Wood Cast:  Jean Harlow , Clark Gable , Stuart Erwin .

BW- 87 mins, CC,

4/9,
7:45 AM

Expensive Women (1931)

A bright young thing can’t decide which of her flirtations should lead to marriage.

Dir:  Hobart Henley Cast:  Dolores Costello , H. B. Warner , Warren William .

BW- 60 mins, CC,

4/9,
9:00 AM

Behind Office Doors (1931)

An under-appreciated secretary finds a new job and takes her former boss’s success with her.

Dir:  Melville Brown Cast:  Mary Astor , Robert Ames , Ricardo Cortez .

BW- 82 mins, CC,

4/9,
10:30 AM

Man Wanted (1932)

A female executive falls in love with her male secretary.

Dir:  William Dieterle Cast:  Kay Francis , David Manners , Una Merkel .

BW- 62 mins, CC,

4/9,
11:45 AM

Female (1933)

A female CEO who’s used to buying love meets her match in an independent young executive.

Dir:  Michael Curtiz Cast:  Ruth Chatterton , George Brent , Lois Wilson .

BW- 60 mins, CC,

4/9,
1:00 PM

The Richest Girl in the World (1934)

To put off fortune-hunters, an heiress trades places with her secretary.

Dir:  William A. Seiter Cast:  Miriam Hopkins , Joel McCrea , Fay Wray .

BW- 75 mins, CC,

4/9,
2:30 PM

Ex-Lady (1933)

A female artist is torn between her belief in free love and the constraints of romance.

Dir:  Robert Florey Cast:  Bette Davis , Gene Raymond , Frank McHugh .

BW- 67 mins, CC,

4/9,
3:45 PM

Smarty (1934)

A squabbling couple can’t seem to make it to the divorce court.

Dir:  Robert Florey Cast:  Joan Blondell , Warren William , Edward Everett Horton .

BW- 65 mins, CC,

4/9,
5:00 PM

Safe in Hell (1931)

On the run from the police, a New Orleans prostitute gets stranded in a tropical haven for outlaws

Dir:  William A. Wellman Cast:  Dorothy Mackaill , Donald Cook , Ralf Harolde .

BW- 73 mins, CC,

4/9,
6:30 PM

The Strange Love Of Molly Louvain (1932)

A woman’s bad taste in men leads to pregnancy out of wedlock.

Dir:  Michael Curtiz Cast:  Ann Dvorak , Lee Tracy , Richard Cromwell .

BW- 73 mins, CC,

4/10,
6:00 AM

Remote Control (1930)

A radio announcer discovers that one of his colleagues is working with the mob.

Dir:  Malcolm St. Clair Cast:  William Haines , Charles King , Mary Doran .

BW- 65 mins,

4/10,
7:30 AM

Are You Listening? (1932)

A radio announcer accidentally kills his wife, then leads an on-air hunt for her killer.

Dir:  Harry Beaumont Cast:  William Haines , Madge Evans , Anita Page .

BW- 73 mins,

4/14,
5:30 AM

Another Fine Mess (1930)

In this short film, two vagabonds move into a deserted mansion and pretend to be its owners.

BW- 28 mins, CC,

4/14,
7:45 AM

The Right of Way (1931)

A married lawyer with amnesia falls in love with another woman.

Dir:  Frank Lloyd Cast:  Conrad Nagel , Loretta Young , Fred Kohler .

BW- 66 mins, CC,

4/14,
11:15 AM

Journal Of A Crime (1934)

Before she can confess to shooting her husband’s mistress, a woman succumbs to amnesia.

Dir:  William Keighley Cast:  Ruth Chatterton , Adolphe Menjou , Claire Dodd .

BW- 65 mins, CC,

4/15,
12:00 PM

The Gay Divorcee (1934)

An unhappily married woman mistakes a suitor for the gigolo hired to end her marriage.

Dir:  Mark Sandrich Cast:  Fred Astaire , Ginger Rogers , Alice Brady .

BW- 105 mins, CC,

4/16,
8:00 AM

The Narrow Corner (1933)

A man on the run for murder tries to escape fate in the Pacific islands.

Dir:  Alfred E. Green Cast:  Douglas Fairbanks , Patricia Ellis , Ralph Bellamy .

BW- 69 mins,

4/18
3:15 AM

Night Flight (1933)

An airline’s owner runs his business with ruthless disregard for safety.

Dir:  Clarence Brown Cast:  John Barrymore , Helen Hayes , Clark Gable .

BW- 85 mins, CC,

4/18
9:15 AM

Double Harness (1933)

After tricking a playboy into marriage, a woman sets out to win his love honestly.

Dir:  John Cromwell Cast:  Ann Harding , William Powell , Lucile Browne .

BW- 69 mins, CC,

4/19
2:00 PM

Red-Headed Woman (1932)

An ambitious secretary tries to sleep her way into high society.

Dir:  Jack Conway Cast:  Jean Harlow , Chester Morris , Lewis Stone .

BW- 79 mins, CC,

4/20
12:15 AM

Baby Face (1933)

A beautiful schemer sleeps her way to the top of a banking empire.

Dir:  Alfred E. Green Cast:  Barbara Stanwyck , George Brent , Donald Cook .

BW- 76 mins, CC,

4/22
8:30 AM

The Heart of New York (1932)

When he invents a new washing machine, a plumber becomes a millionaire.

Dir:  Mervyn LeRoy Cast:  Joe Smith , Charles Dale , George Sidney .

BW- 73 mins,

4/22
1:30 PM

Fast Life (1932)

An innocent man stands trial for killing the man who tried to steal his wife.

Dir:  Harry Pollard Cast:  William Haines , Madge Evans , Conrad Nagel .

BW- 82 mins, CC,

4/22
3:00 PM

Buzzin’ Around (1933)

In his rush to demonstrate his invention of “wonder liquid,” a country boy unknowingly grabs a jar of moonshine instead in this short film. Vitaphone Release 1509-1510.

Dir:  Alfred J. Goulding Cast:  Donald MacBride , Harry Ward , Al Ochs .

BW- 20 mins,

4/22
3:30 PM

Flying High (1931)

A hare-brained inventor invents a new flying machine but can’t figure out how to land it.

Dir:  Charles F. Riesner Cast:  Bert Lahr , Charlotte Greenwood , Pat O’Brien .

BW- 81 mins, CC,

4/23
7:30 AM

Dark Horse, The ( 1932)

A political machine backs a dimwitted candidate for governor.

Dir:  Alfred E. Green Cast:  Warren William , Bette Davis , Guy Kibbee .

BW- 74 mins, CC,

4/23
4:15 PM

Gabriel Over The White House (1933)

A crooked president reforms mysteriously.

Dir:  Gregory LaCava Cast:  Walter Huston , Karen Morley , Franchot Tone .

BW- 86 mins, CC,

4/24
6:00 AM

Laugh and Get Rich (1931)

A man drives his family wild with get-rich-quick schemes.

Dir:  Gregory La Cava Cast:  Edna May Oliver , Hugh Herbert , Dorothy Lee .

BW- 72 mins,

4/24
7:30 AM

Smart Woman (1931)

A woman plots to make her cheating husband jealous.

Dir:  Gregory La Cava Cast:  Mary Astor , Robert Ames , John Halliday .

BW- 68 mins, CC,

4/24
8:45 AM

The Age of Consent (1932)

College co-eds learns to handle the responsibilities of romance.

Dir:  Gregory LaCava Cast:  Dorothy Wilson , Arline Judge , Richard Cromwell .

BW- 63 mins, CC,

4/24
10:00 AM

Symphony of Six Million (1932)

A doctor fights his way from the slums to Park Avenue.

Dir:  Gregory La Cava Cast:  Ricardo Cortez , Irene Dunne , Anna Appel .

BW- 95 mins,

4/24
11:30 AM

Bed of Roses (1933)

A girl from the wrong side of the tracks is torn between true love and a life of sin .

Dir:  Gregory LaCava Cast:  Constance Bennett , Joel McCrea , John Halliday .

BW- 67 mins, CC,

4/24
12:45 PM

The Half Naked Truth (1933)

A carnival pitch man turns a sideshow dancer into an overnight sensation.

Dir:  Gregory La Cava Cast:  Lupe Velez , Lee Tracy , Eugene Pallette .

BW- 77 mins, CC,

4/26
6:00 AM

The Front Page (1931)

A crusading newspaper editor tricks his retiring star reporter into covering one last case.

Dir:  Lewis Milestone Cast:  Adolph Menjou , Pat O’Brien , Mary Brian .

BW- 101 mins, CC,

4/27
6:00 AM

The Passionate Plumber (1932)

A woman hires a plumber to make her lover jealous.

Dir:  Edward Sedgwick Cast:  Buster Keaton , Jimmy Durante , Polly Moran .

BW- 74 mins,

4/27
1:00 PM

The Cuban Love Song (1931)

An ex-marine returns to Cuba to find the child he fathered on leave.

Dir:  W. S. Van Dyke Cast:  Lawrence Tibbett , Lupe Velez , Ernest Torrence .

BW- 86 mins, CC,

4/27
2:30 PM

Meet the Baron (1933)

A bumbler passes himself off as a legendary story teller.

Dir:  Walter Lang Cast:  Jack Pearl , Jimmy Durante , ZaSu Pitts .

BW- 67 mins, CC,

4/27
3:45 PM

Hollywood Party (1934)

A movie star’s gala celebration creates chaos.

Dir:  Allan Dwan Cast:  Stan Laurel , Oliver Hardy , Jimmy Durante .

C- 69 mins, CC,

4/27
6:30 PM

Speak Easily (1932)

A professor gets mixed up with chorus girls in a Broadway musical.

Dir:  Edward Sedgwick Cast:  Buster Keaton , Jimmy Durante , Ruth Selwyn .

BW- 81 mins, CC,

4/29
5:15 AM

The Laurel-Hardy Murder Case (1930)

In this comedic short, a fishing trip leads Laurel and Hardy to a mansion where a murder has been committed.

Dir:  James Parrott Cast:  Frank Austin , Art Rowlands , Oliver Hardy .

BW- 30 mins, CC,

4/29
6:00 AM

A Modern Hero (1934)

A circus rider makes a hit in the automotive industry but can’t find happiness.

Dir:  G. W. Pabst Cast:  Richard Barthelmess , Jean Muir , Marjorie Rambeau .

BW- 71 mins,

4/29
12:30 PM

The Unholy Three (1930)

A ventriloquist, a strong man and a midget form a criminal alliance.

Dir:  Jack Conway Cast:  Lon Chaney , Lila Lee , Elliott Nugent .

BW- 72 mins, CC,

4/29
3:30 PM

Freaks (1932)

A lady trapeze artist violates the code of the side show when she plots to murder her midget husband.

Dir:  Tod Browning Cast:  Wallace Ford , Leila Hyams , Olga Baclanova .

BW- 62 mins, CC,

4/29
9:45 PM

Expensive Women (1931)

A bright young thing can’t decide which of her flirtations should lead to marriage.

Dir:  Hobart Henley Cast:  Dolores Costello , H. B. Warner , Warren William .

BW- 60 mins, CC,

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