A review plus background information about Paramount pre-Code The Story of Temple Drake (1933), adapted from Sanctuary by William Faulkner. Book and adaptation are compared and contrasted. Casting and path to screen are covered, including George Raft’s refusal to appear in the film. Biographical information about stars Miriam Hopkins and Jack La Rue. Lengthy article, over 5,500 words, first appeared in Classic Movie Monthly #5.
Paramount pre-Code Pick-Up (1933) is the first of three movies co-starring Sylvia Sidney and George Raft. Also features William Harrigan and Lilian Bond. Based on a story by Viña Delmar and directed by Sidney-regular Marion Gering.
What Price Hollywood? (1932), the best of the pre-Code era “inside-Hollywood” films, stars Constance Bennett and Lowell Sherman in director George Cukor’s first film for David O. Selznick.
Murder-mystery GIRL MISSING (1933) ignores its murder and telegraphs its mystery, but Glenda Farrell manages to carry the day anyway. An excellent pre-Code showcase for the actress. Good support from Guy Kibbee, Helen Ware, and Ferdinand Gottschalk.
A 4,000 word biography of the African American actress Louise Beavers whose greatest fame came as Aunt Delilah in 1934’s Imitation of Life. She enjoyed a long career in mostly maid roles including a starring role on early 1950s television series Beulah.
It’s tempting to call RKO’s Hell’s Highway (1932) a knockoff on I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang. However the Richard Dix movie came first. A long essay looking at Hell’s Highway, Dix, the Etude Ethiopian Chorus and that other Chain Gang movie.
William Wellman directs and Loretta Young stars in MIDNIGHT MARY (1933) a fast-paced MGM pre-code movie that inherits a Warner Brothers feel from director, cinematographer and star.
A look at Dr. Monica (1934), a pre-code Kay Francis film featuring a strong performance by Jean Muir. Also starring Verree Teasdale and Warren William.