Pre-Code Movies on TCM in May 2021

Happy May! The sun is out, the TV is on, and we’re inside.

This month TCM will be featuring the second year of its virtual Turner Classic Movies Film Festival (TCMFF). This year the network will feature not just content on the cable channel, but with other content available to stream on HBO Max. For a full rundown of all the events around this year’s festival, I highly recommend checking out Angela’s thorough post over at The Hollywood Revue. I’m hoping to post a few things next week in relation to it, but we’ll have to see what happens.

As for the reset of the month, be sure to tune in May 23rd where the prime time lineup are all James Whale pre-Codes, including the rarely seen The Kiss Before the Mirror.

Outside of TCM, there is one important subject that I wanted to bring up for those of you who are skimming this site’s archives. Recently, some old web hosting I was using expired, and this was hosting a bunch of images for my site back before I paid for hosting about 8 or 9 years ago. Unfortunately, all of these images are now gone from my old reviews, and I do not have those images any more.

I do plan on going back to these old reviews and cleaning up and updating them, but as I am a resolute perfectionist, I will also be tempted to rewatch this movies and take new, better screenshots. This, also quite obviously, takes a great deal of time, so I’m sorry if you find an old, crappy review; I’m working on it. I’ll post the updated reviews on Twitter when they drop, but I’ll be sure to mention them in my next roundup post here as well, cross my heart.

For example, I recently updated my reviews of Call Her Savage and She Done Him Wrong with all new images and research. Check it out!

A friendly reminder: if you want to support my site, you can become a Patron over at Patreon. Have a good month!

Pre-Code Movies on TCM in May

Date & Time Film

2nd
9:15 AM

The Smiling Lieutenant (1931)

A misfired flirtation lands a young lieutenant married to a princess instead of the one he loves.

Dir:  Ernst Lubitsch Cast:  Maurice Chevalier , Claudette Colbert , Miriam Hopkins .

BW- 89 mins, CC,

4th
1:00 AM

King Kong (1933)

A film crew discovers the “eighth wonder of the world,” a giant prehistoric ape, and brings him back to New York, where he wreaks havoc.

Dir:  Merian C. Cooper Cast:  Fay Wray , Robert Armstrong , Bruce Cabot .

BW- 104 mins, CC,

5th
7:15 AM

The Mystery Of The Wax Museum (1933)

A disfigured sculptor turns murder victims into wax statues.

Dir:  Michael Curtiz Cast:  Lionel Atwill , Fay Wray , Glenda Farrell .

C- 78 mins, CC,

6th
6:00 AM

Midnight Mary (1933)

An abused orphan sinks into a life of crime.

Dir:  William Wellman Cast:  Loretta Young , Ricardo Cortez , Franchot Tone .

BW- 74 mins, CC,

7th
1:30 AM

Doctor X (1932)

TCM premiere of recently restored version. The new two-color Technicolor master was restored by UCLA Film and Television Archive and The Film Foundation in association with Warner Bros. Entertainment. A reporter investigates a series of cannibalistic murders at a medical college.

Dir:  Michael Curtiz  CastFay Wray, Lee Tracy, Preston Foster

Color – 76 mins, CC

9th
8:45 AM

Her Man (1930)

World television premiere of restored version. Based loosely on the stage play “Frankie and Johnny,” a Havana prostitute with a deadly pimp falls for a sailor.

Dir:  Tay Garnett  Cast:  Helen Twelvetrees, Philips Holmes

Color – 83 mins, CC

10th
6:00 AM

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,

12th
6:00 AM

Morning Glory (1933)

A stage struck girl travels to New York determined to make it on Broadway.

Dir:  Lowell Sherman Cast:  Katharine Hepburn , Douglas Fairbanks , Adolphe Menjou .

BW- 74 mins, CC,

13th
12:01 AM

Ladies of the Jury (1932)

A jury hold-out tries to prove the defendant’s innocence.

Dir:  Lowell Sherman Cast:  Edna May Oliver , Jill Esmond , Rosco Ates .

BW- 63 mins,

14th
12:01 AM

What Price Hollywood? (1932)

A drunken director whose career is fading helps a waitress become a Hollywood star.

Dir:  George Cukor Cast:  Constance Bennett , Lowell Sherman , Neil Hamilton .

BW- 88 mins, CC,

14th
6:00 AM

Eleven Men and a Girl (1930)

A college flirt lures the nation’s best football players to join her school’s team.

Dir:  William A. Wellman Cast:  Joe E. Brown , Joan Bennett , Frank McHugh .

BW- 72 mins, CC,

14th
7:15 AM

The Flirting Widow (1930)

A girl creates an imaginary lover to impress her father, but the lie gets in the way of true romance.

Dir:  William Seiter Cast:  Dorothy Mackaill , Basil Rathbone , Leila Hyams .

BW- 72 mins,

16th
6:00 AM

The Merry Widow (1934)

A prince from a small kingdom courts a wealthy widow to keep her money in the country.

Dir:  Ernst Lubitsch Cast:  Maurice Chevalier , Jeanette MacDonald , Edward Everett Horton .

BW- 99 mins, CC,

18th
2:15 PM

The Most Dangerous Game (1932)

A big game hunter decides to stalk human prey.

Dir:  Ernest B. Schoedsack Cast:  Joel McCrea , Fay Wray , Robert Armstrong .

BW- 63 mins, CC,

20th
7:00 AM

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,

20th
4:15 PM

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,

22nd
6:00 AM

Lovers Courageous (1932)

A failed playwright falls for an admiral’s daughter.

Dir:  Robert Z. Leonard Cast:  Robert Montgomery , Madge Evans , Roland Young .

BW- 78 mins, CC,

23rd
8:00 PM

Frankenstein (1931)

A crazed scientist creates a living being from body parts, not realizing it has a madman’s brain.

Dir:  James Whale Cast:  Colin Clive , Mae Clarke , John Boles .

BW- 70 mins, CC,

23rd
9:30 PM

Waterloo Bridge (1931)

A ballerina sinks into prostitution when her husband is reported killed in World War I.

Dir:  James Whale Cast:  Mae Clarke , Kent Douglass , Doris Lloyd .

BW- 81 mins, CC,

23rd
11:00 PM

The Kiss Before the Mirror (1933)

An attorney defending a friend whose wife cheated on him suspects his own wife of adultery.

Dir:  James Whale Cast:  Nancy Carroll , Frank Morgan , Paul Lukas .

BW- 68 mins,

24th
6:00 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,

27th
8:00 AM

42nd Street (1933)

The definitive backstage musical, complete with the dazzling newcomer who goes on for the injured star.

Dir:  Lloyd Bacon Cast:  Warner Baxter , Bebe Daniels , George Brent .

BW- 89 mins, CC,

31st
7:00 AM

Ace of Aces (1933)

After he’s branded a coward, a sculptor travels to France to help fight World War I.

Dir:  J. Walter Ruben Cast:  Richard Dix , Elizabeth Allen , Ralph Bellamy .

BW- 77 mins, CC,

1st
4:45 AM

War Nurse (1930)

A nurse fights to survive when she’s caught behind enemy lines during World War I.

Dir:  Edgar Selwyn Cast:  Robert Montgomery , Anita Page , June Walker .

BW- 79 mins,

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