Thursday, September 04, 2014

TCM Friday Spotlight: Pre-Codes

Turner Classic Movies is hosting an amazing pre-Code festival this month, expanding its Friday Night Spotlight franchise into four 24-hour marathons of pre-Code films. Over the course of the month 67 pre-Code films will be shown on Fridays!

It all begins this Friday, September 5th.

This is a wonderful chance for any film fan to enjoy and deepen their appreciation of the films made in the sound period up to the beginning of the strict enforcement of the Production Code, which began in July 1934. There's a remarkable range of titles in this festival, including gangster films, musicals, and juicy melodramas.

There's an excellent overview of the month on the TCM website, and TCM's complete schedule can be visited here.

Fans of pre-Codes will find pretty much anything shown in this festival of interest! Below I've shared review links and cast information for any pre-Codes showing this month which have been previously reviewed here, in hopes the links will provide references for further exploration. Click on any title to read more information.

I'm hard-pressed to pick a favorite, but if I had to recommend just one pre-Code title airing on TCM this month, I think I'd choose MIDNIGHT MARY (1933) with Loretta Young, Ricardo Cortez, and Franchot Tone, directed by William Wellman. It's one of my favorite pre-Codes, and it's also one of my favorite Loretta Young movies. It will be shown on September 26th.

Airing on September 5th:

THE BIG SHAKEDOWN (1934) - Bette Davis, Ricardo Cortez

FEMALE (1933) - Ruth Chatterton, George Brent

NIGHT NURSE (1931) - Barbara Stanwyck, Joan Blondell, Clark Gable

THE DIVORCEE (1930) - Norma Shearer, Chester Morris, Robert Montgomery

FOOTLIGHT PARADE (1933) - James Cagney, Dick Powell, Joan Blondell

GOLD DIGGERS OF 1933 (9133) - Dick Powell, Joan Blondell, Ruby Keeler

TAXI! (1932) - James Cagney, Loretta Young

September 12th:

WHEN LADIES MEET (1933) - Myrna Loy, Robert Montgomery

UNION DEPOT (1932) - Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Joan Blondell

MARY STEVENS, M.D. (1933) - Kay Francis, Lyle Talbot, Glenda Farrell

BOMBSHELL (1933) - Jean Harlow, Lee Tracy

RED-HEADED WOMAN (1932) - Jean Harlow, Chester Morris

RED DUST (1932) - Jean Harlow, Clark Gable

DESIGN FOR LIVING (1933) - Gary Cooper, Miriam Hopkins, Fredric March

TROUBLE IN PARADISE (1932) - Miriam Hopkins, Herbert Marshall, Kay Francis

JEWEL ROBBERY (1932) - William Powell, Kay Francis

September 19th:

THREE WISE GIRLS (1932) - Jean Harlow, Mae Clarke

LADY KILLER (1933) - James Cagney, Mae Clarke

BEAUTY AND THE BOSS (1932) - Warren William, Marian Marsh

BLONDE CRAZY (1931) - James Cagney, Joan Blondell

SHE HAD TO SAY YES (1933) - Loretta Young, Lyle Talbot

September 26th:

LADIES THEY TALK ABOUT (1933) - Barbara Stanwyck, Lyle Talbot, Preston Foster

THEY CALL IT SIN (1932) - Loretta Young, George Brent

EMPLOYEES' ENTRANCE (1933) - Loretta Young, Warren William

MIDNIGHT MARY (1933) - Loretta Young, Ricardo Cortez, Franchot Tone

THE PUBLIC ENEMY (1931) - James Cagney, Jean Harlow

LITTLE CAESAR (1931) - Edward G. Robinson, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Glenda Farrell

PENTHOUSE (1933) - Myrna Loy, Warner Baxter

There are many pre-Codes being shown beyond those listed above. For more on TCM this month, please visit TCM in September: Highlights and TCM Star of the Month: Melvyn Douglas.

Happy viewing!


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