1931-1940

Frank Tuttle – Roman Scandals (1933)

Review by TV Guide
Of the six films Eddie Cantor made for Samuel Goldwyn, Roman Scandals was his fourth and second only to The Kid From Spain in popularity. When Goldwyn’s idea to adapt George Bernard Shaw’s “Androcles And The Lion” as a vehicle for Cantor proved too difficult, the producer hired Robert Sherwood and George S. Kaufman to fashion a story that would take Cantor to imperial Rome. Displeased with their draft, Goldwyn brought in Nat Perrin, George Oppenheimer, and Arthur Sheekman to add jokes, and William Anthony McGuire to get the whole thing into shape for shooting. This film turned out to be one of the best Cantor-Goldwyn associations. With humor, music, and more than a little female flesh, Roman Scandals is a sort of Wizard of Oz in that Cantor, a wacky delivery boy in West Rome, Oklahoma, goes into a dream sequence and imagines himself to be a slave in old Rome. Read More »

José Luis Sáenz de Heredia & Luis Buñuel – ¿Quién me quiere a mí? AKA Who Loves Me? (1936)

Quote:
The singer Marta Velez decides to retire to make-up her marriage. Her husband, a vividor, tries to cheat her a large sum of money. Unable to get it, he thinks of a plan to kidnap his daughter and that the mother pay a ransom. Read More »

Alfred E. Green – East of the River (1940)

Synopsis:
Troubled youths Joe and Nick Lorenzo grow into very different men: Joe a small-time hoodlum and Nick an honored college graduate. When Nick falls for Joe’s girl Laurie, trouble erupts between the two men and also with the gang that has it in for Joe. Read More »

Basil Dean – The Constant Nymph (1933)

A married man leaves his wife for a teenage girl.

The Constant Nymph is a 1933 British drama film directed by Basil Dean and Victoria Hopper, Brian Aherne and Leonora Corbett. It is an adaptation of the novel The Constant Nymph by Margaret Kennedy. Dean tried to persuade Novello to reprise his appearance from the 1928 silent version The Constant Nymph but was turned down and cast Aherne in the part instead. Read More »

A. Edward Sutherland – Palmy Days (1931)

Review of the film from the IMDb by “AlsExGal” (posted 31 January, 2010):
At a time when musicals had fallen completely out of favor with the movie-going public, Eddie Cantor and Busby Berkeley were still able to bring smiles to faces and audiences into theaters with this 1931 pseudo-musical by offering a bankable star (Cantor) in a foolproof formula. The title refers to a ring of bogus spiritualists for which Cantor’s character has served unwittingly as a front man. During the film Eddie falls repeatedly into some dangerous or embarrassing situation and by virtue of his own hyperactivity emerges victorious in each case. Read More »

Victor Saville – First a Girl (1935)

British musical star Jessie Matthews tops the bill in this song-studded comedy. Elizabeth (Matthews) is a delivery girl for a seamstress who is dispatched to drop off some costumes at a theatre where a noted female impersonator is about to open a new show. The star is suddenly stricken with laryngitis, and Elizabeth is drafted to take over in his place, posing as a man who dresses like a woman. Elizabeth is a hit, and with Victor (Sonnie Hale) as her manager, she sets forth on a concert tour of Europe; she continues to perform as a man and draws packed houses and enthusiastic reviews. However, a mysterious Princess (Anna Lee) and her significant other get the strange feeling there’s something odd about this new singing star, and they’re determined to find out what it is. First a Girl was adapted from the German film Viktor und Viktoria, which would be remade into the American musical comedy Victor/Victoria. Read More »

Tay Garnett – Stand-In (1937)

Synopsis:
Atterbury Dodd is an efficiency expert who believes everything can be reduced to mathematics. He is sent to Hollywood to see whether Colossal Pictures is a good investment. He soon learns that movie production doesn’t fit his formulaic mindset. Read More »