Pre-Code.Com Site News for August 2016
The good news: there’s some excellent pre-Code programming on TCM for August. There are early-30s focused days dedicated to stars like Robert Montgomery, Fay Wray, Jean Harlow, Ruby Keeler, Boris Karloff, Janet Gaynor and– amazingly– Constance Cummings.
The bad news: between grad school and being a stay-at-home father, August looks pretty paltry for posts. I will still have reviews for you on every Friday and the new issue of the Companion should arrive soon, but I will unfortunately not be posting anything connected to Summer Under the Stars, and, as I will be having a very busy fall, I’m not sure when I will be able to catch up. But I love this site, and, trust me, I have big things planned for it just as soon as I finish school this winter.
So go out and watch some good stuff!
Pre-Code Hollywood Movies on TCM in August
Please note: All times are Eastern. This schedule is subject to change. See the full listings here. To watch TCM online, check out their TCM Watch site.
|1st, 6:00 AM
||Tiger Shark (1932)
Edward G. Robinson and Richard Arlen battle over Zita Johann.
|4th, 6:00 AM
||The Unholy Garden (1931)
A gentleman thief falls for the daughter of the man he’s trying to rob. Kicks off a day devoted to Fay Wray!
|4th, 7:30 AM
||Ann Carver’s Profession (1933)
A female lawyer is torn between her career and her husband’s ego.
|4th, 11:45 AM
||The Richest Girl in the World (1934)
An heiress trades places with a secretary to throw off fortune hunters.
|4th, 2:30 PM
||Captain Thunder (1931)
A Mexican bandit kidnaps a wedding party.
|4th, 10:00 PM
||King Kong (1933)
Fay Wray kills an amorous giant gorilla.
|5th, 3:15 AM
||The Most Dangerous Game (1932)
Spoiler alert: not foosball.
|7th, 10:00 AM
||Beast of the City (1932)
Part a day of Jean Harlow films! (Hint: avoid the post-Code ones (except Libeled Lady))
|11th, 6:00 AM
||20,000 Years in Sing Sing (1932)
A criminal takes the wrap to protect a woman. The only pre-Code on Spencer Tracy day (probably because it’s the only one owned by Warner Bros…)
|12th, 12:00 PM
Part of a day dedicated to Janet Gaynor! An immigrant falls for a dashing playboy engaged to another woman.
|12th, 4:15 PM
||State Fair (1933)
Children of Iowa farmers find love with mixed results. Best Picture nominee.
|12th, 6:15 PM
||Change of Heart (1934)
Two college sweethearts attempt to make it in the big city.
|20th, 4:00 AM
||The Phynx (1970)
Okay, not a pre-Code, but you really have to see it to believe it.
|23rd, 6:00 AM
||The Divorcee (1930)
Starts a day of Robert Montgomery movies. Can’t go wrong here…
|23rd, 7:30 AM
||The Man in Possession (1931)
An out-of-luck heiress falls for the man appointed to dispose of her property.
|23rd, 12:00 PM
||The Mystery of Mr. X (1934)
A jewel thief tries to prove himself innocent of a string of murders.
|24th, 6:00 AM
||Traveling Husbands (1931)
A wild party puts two married salesmen into trouble. Starts a day of Constance Cummings pictures! … Constance Cummings? Never would have expected that.
|24th, 10:30 AM
||This Man is Mine (1934)
A woman fights to keep her husband from cheating.
|24th, 3:30 PM
||The Big Timer (1931)
A female manager handles a boxer.
|24th, 5:00 PM
||Attorney for the Defense (1932)
Edmund Lowe is a ruthless attorney who must make amends.
|24th, 6:30 PM
||The Guilty Generation (1931)
Children of feuding gangsters fall in love.
|24th, 8:00 PM
||Broadway Thru a Keyhole (1933)
A gangster helps a young dancer rise to stardom only to have her fall for another man.
|24th, 11:15 PM
||American Madness (1932)
A banker fights to keep his independence. From Frank Capra.
|25th, 4:15 AM
||The Criminal Code (1931)
Howard Hawks film about a convict stuck in a moral dilemma.
Questions? Comments? Or do you just want to bug me? Leave a comment below!
Sandra Farnham · July 31, 2016 at 12:49 am
The Black Cat! A must see for me; I really enjoy that movie. I have the Phynx on Warner Archive DVD – you’re right it really must be seen to be believed.
Lucius Vanini · August 7, 2016 at 1:51 am
I must and will see PHYNX…. Just saw the splendid MISS LONELY HEARTS (1958, Clift, R. Ryan, M. Loy), another film of which I’d never heard. Then again, after that appalling run of “African-American” films on TCM–undertaken for no artistic purpose but only for nauseating political correctness (and some of them were nothing but celluloid that had deteriorated and conveyed no picture)–EVERYTHING seems a classic! A bad day when Robert Osborne got too old!!!! The new folks will ruin the great TCM yet…..
Patricia Nolan-Hall (@CaftanWoman) · July 31, 2016 at 3:31 am
Whoo-hoo! Oh, and take care not to spread yourself too thin. We’ll still be here to read your stuff when ready.
Lucius Vanini · August 9, 2016 at 1:46 am
Yesterday I spent all but two or three minutes in my motel unit, whose cable TV affords TCM, to see ALL of nine Jean Harlow films, some parts of two others, and the documentary “The Blond Bombshell.” Saw more of Jeanie H. than I had in all my previous life, and liked almost everything I saw. A guy is in a pretty pitiable state when he wants to jump on a TV screen, aroused by black-and-white images of a woman dead for 79 years……… The last one I saw, deep in the wee hours, was one I’d wanted to watch for some time–RED-HEADED WOMAN, and I wasn’t disappointed. I guess that’s my favorite Harlow, a close second being CHINA SEAS, one of the few I’d seen before. RED-HEADED WOMAN is a remarkable Pre-Coder, not only for its sexual realism but for its flying in the face of Sunday-school morality, according to which the “wicked” always suffer in the end–a contemptible fallacy contradicted every second by real life. Thanks to the wonderful Pre-Code freedom, a woman without morals or scruples or a conscience prospers in the end–a result which would soon be forbidden by the thought police, who’d thenceforth make sure that every film about “wrongdoers” would be a morality play in which virtue is rewarded and vice punished. For my part, I prefer truth and truly “adult” depictions of life like RED-HEADED WOMAN. For my part, I like what William S. Gilbert has the Mikado say: “I’m sorry for you, but this is an unjust world, and virtue is triumphant only in theatrical performances”–HAHAHAHAHA!!!
Lucius Vanini · August 9, 2016 at 2:20 am
POST SCRIPT to my comment concerning RED-HEADED WOMAN. In the Internet the film is categorized a romantic comedy–and perhaps the studio at some point called it one; but that is clearly an attempt to preclude a charge of amorality. Anyone who watches that honest film sees that it is NOT a comedy–no way, or no more a comedy than life is!
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