The Hurricane (1937)

JOHN FORD Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.  USA, 1937.  The Samuel Goldwyn Company.  Screenplay by Dudley Nichols, adaptation by Oliver H.P. Garrett, based on the novel by Charles Nordhoff, James Norman Hall.  Cinematography by Bert Glennon.  Produced by Samuel Goldwyn.  Music by Alfred Newman.  Production Design by Richard Day.  Costume Design by Omar Kiam.  Film Editing by Lloyd Nosler.  Academy Awards 1937.  This excellent…

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Dead End (1937)

WILLIAM WYLER Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.5.  USA, 1937.  The Samuel Goldwyn Company.  Screenplay by Lillian Hellman, based on the play by Sidney Kingsley.  Cinematography by Gregg Toland.  Produced by Samuel Goldwyn.  Music by Alfred Newman.  Production Design by Richard Day.  Costume Design by Omar Kiam.  Film Editing by Daniel Mandell.  Academy Awards 1937.   Compelling adaptation of the play by Sidney Kingsley, with most of the…

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In Old Chicago (1937)

HENRY KING Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA, 1937.  Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation, Darryl F. Zanuck Productions.  Story by Niven Busch, Screenplay by Lamar Trotti, Sonya Levien.  Cinematography by J. Peverell Marley.  Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck.  Music by Cyril J. Mockridge.  Production Design by William S. Darling, Rudolph Sternad.  Costume Design by Royer.  Film Editing by Barbara McLean.  Academy Awards 1937.   The old…

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Something To Sing About (1937)

VICTOR SCHERTZINGER Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBB.  USA, 1937.  Zion Meyers Productions.  Story by Victor Schertzinger, Screenplay by Austin Parker.  Cinematography by John Stumar.  Produced by Zion Myers, Victor Schertzinger.  Music by Myrl Alderman.  Production Design by Robert E. Lee, Paul Murphy.  Film Editing by Gene Milford.  Academy Awards 1937.   James Cagney was recruited to help push Grand National Pictures into the big leagues with the other…

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Manhattan Merry-Go-Round (Manhattan Music Box)

BB (out of 5) A silly distraction that is barely an excuse to showcase the popular music of the period.  A small-time radio station is taken over by a group of gangsters in need of a front.  This puts singer Phil Regan into a bind when he wants to marry secretary Ann Dvorak but has to shunt…

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A Day At The Races

BBBBB (out of 5) Reviews of this film always point out that it isn’t quite as good as its predecessor A Night At The Opera, but who cares?  The plot is strung together a little more haphazardly than before, but it doesn’t make Groucho any less witty or the sight gags any less brilliant. The story,…

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Night Must Fall

BBBB (out of 5) Faithful to the original stageplay by Emlyn Williams, this entire film takes place in the peaceful English country cottage of a mean old English lady (Dame May Whitty). She lives there with her spinster niece/paid companion (Rosalind Russell), their only other company being the two saucy maids in their kitchen. Whitty…

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One Hundred Men And A Girl

BBB.5 (out of 5) Deanna Durbin is in top form in this charming little musical about a young girl who puts together a giant orchestra and secures funding from an absent-minded society lady (Alice Brady) in order to get her father employed. Durbin sings her little heart out, opera and popular tunes alike, and the sweet…

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Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs

BBBBB (out of 5) The very first animated feature film to be made by Walt Disney’s team is still as fresh and fun as it ever was back in 1938. Snow White is an annoyingly innocent and sweet young lady who escapes into a dark and frightening forest when it becomes known to her that…

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The Good Earth

BBB (out of 5) An important epic of the thirties that has not aged well for many reasons, the biggest of them likely to be the fact that it is a cast of mostly white actors in yellowface, with real Asians populating the background. Paul Muni, who is ridiculous, and Luise Rainer, who is surprisingly…

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The Awful Truth

BBBB.5 (out of 5) Comedy masterpiece by Leo McCarey that is probably his greatest film. Irene Dunne and Cary Grant play an estranged married couple who, after discovering about each other’s extramarital affairs, decide to get divorced. Still unable to shake each other off after they’ve separated, they are constantly in the other’s way after establishing new…

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Topper

BBBB (out of 5) The delightful comedy that inspired two sequels and a television series.  Constance Bennett and Cary Grant are a wealthy society couple whose responsibilities are just momentary details in their days and nights of drunken carousing and joyriding.  After a careless accident turns them both into ghosts, the fun only increases as they begin…

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