One of James Cagney’s classic gangster movies, The Roaring Twenties (1939) also boasts an especially nasty Humphrey Bogart in its cast, plus strong work from Gladys George. Post includes background about writer Mark Hellinger, real-life roaring twenties personalities Larry Fay and Texas Guinan, plus a look at a pre-Code predecessor Broadway Thru a Keyhole (1933).
Edmund Lowe stars in Attorney for the Defense, second of four 1932 pre-Code crooked lawyer movies based on the exploits of William J. Fallon. With Evelyn Brent and Constance Cummings; Directed by Irving Cumming for Columbia.
I cover Richard Barthelmess in Heroes for Sale (1933) inside the latest issue of The Pre-Code Companion for Kindle. An excerpt is included here.
A list of the 31 classic movie stars that Turner Classic Movies is highlighting throughout August during TCM’s 2016 Summer Under the Stars programming.
Based on a book by Captain Cornelius Willemse, the NYPD’s original “gang buster,” Behind the Green Lights pits the police vs. a crooked mouthpiece and features a romance between cop and lawyer. Easily found independent release is fast-paced and entertaining.
Laying out the six objectives of the Anti Red-Head League, plus the organization’s fifteen counts against red-headed women. Summer 1932.
Warner Baxter stars as a love-struck politician who is assassinated just before a key international vote. Science gives him another 6 Hours to Live after a powerful ray brings him back to life. Also starring Miriam Jordan and John Boles. Directed by William Dieterle. A 1932 Fox Films release.
Merna Kennedy was an unknown dancer and actress when she emerged alongside Charlie Chaplin in The Circus (1928), the peak to a short movie career. This biography covers Merna Kennedy’s background, a few of her films, and her tragically premature death.
Ripped from the headlines: New York’s Vice Squad scandal in Paramount pre-Code The Vice Squad (1931), starring Paul Lukas in a part inspired by Chile Acuna, with Kay Francis and Judith Wood. Directed by John Cromwell.
The second film adaptation of Babbitt by Sinclair Lewis was released in late 1934. Guy Kibbee is well cast in the title role with Aline MacMahon as his wife Myra Babbitt. Directed by William Keighley for First National-Warner Bros.