1931-1940

Georg Wilhelm Pabst – The Mistress of Atlantis AKA The Lost Atlantis (1932)

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Synopsis:

Two soldiers–searching the Sahara for Atlantis–are captured by raiders from the lost city. They are taken before its beautiful queen who has over 50 mummified ex-lovers! What follows is an endless nightmare, climaxing with the murder of one of the soldiers. There are some brilliant moments in this sci-fi fantasy classic.

A pair of Legionnaires discover the remains of the lost city of Atlantis in the middle of the Sahara desert. It is ruled by a strange and beautiful demi-goddess. (guess who). Read More »

Sidney Lanfield – Broadway Bad (1933)

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TCM Synopsis:

In varying degrees of undress, the chorus girls of the “Frolics of 1929” gossip that the show’s rich backer, brokerage head Craig Cutting, has “given the gate” to his mistress Aileen, one of the dancers, in preference to Antoinette “Tony” Landers, a dancer described as “a nice kid from a nice home.” As the girls chat, Tony is being seduced by her boyfriend, Bob North, the scion of a wealthy family, in the empty stadium at Yale, where he goes to college. Sometime later, as Tony prepares to go to her social debut at Craig’s party, Aileen confuses and upsets her with taunts about Craig’s “dividend checks” and “technique.” At the party, Tony learns that the dividend checks Craig has been giving her have not come, as she supposed, from the bonds her mother left her, but instead directly from Craig. She rebukes him for putting her in a position of obligation to him and refuses to succumb to his “technique” after he denies that he expects anything in return. Just then, Bob, whose suspicions have been fueled by Aileen, arrives and, after revealing that Tony is his wife, slaps her face with the cancelled checks, calls her a “dirty little tramp” and leaves. Tony confesses to Craig that she kept the marriage secret so that Bob would not be kicked out of college. When she asks Craig to help straighten out the situation, he refuses to interfere.
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George Cukor – Camille (1936)

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Marguerite is a courtesan in Paris. She falls deeply in love with a young man of promise, Armand Duval. When Armand’s father begs her not to ruin his hope of a career and position by marrying Armand, she acquiesces and leaves her lover. However, when poverty and terminal illness overwhelm her, Marguerite discovers that Armand has not lost his love for her. Read More »

Ray Enright – Havana Widows (1933)

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The wonderful Warner Bros. stock company goes through its customarily breezy paces in Havana Widows. Joan Blondell and Glenda Farrell star as Mae and Sadie, a couple of hard-boiled dames who support themselves by shaking down wealthy and susceptible older men in Havana. Their current target is Deacon Jones (Guy Kibbee), a self-appointed moralist whose rock-ribbed values disappear after the third drink. But Blondell spoils the scam when she falls in love with the Deacon’s son Bob (Lyle Talbot). Less than a month after the release of Havana Widows, many of the same cast members were back to their old tricks in Convention City. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide
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Ray Enright – I’ve Got Your Number (1934)

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Plot:
The adventures of wisecracking telephone repairmen Terry and Johnny are by turns comic, risque, and heroic. Terry pursues Marie, a hotel switchboard operator, who loses her job when she innocently does a favor for gangster Nicky. Terry gets Marie a job with financier Schuyler; but Nicky has new plans for her. Read More »

Yakov Protazanov – Bespridannitsa AKA The bride without a dowry (1937)

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From allmovie: Filmed in 1937 (in fact: 1936), the Russian film “Without Dowry” was released in America in 1946, one year after the death of its director, Yakov Protazanov. Produced on a far-less epic scale than most Protazanov films, this is a merciless satire of the Russian dowry system in particular and the Czarist regime in general. The heroine (Nina Alisova) is promised in marriage to a bureaucrat (Victor Balikhin), who is interested only in receiving the girl’s dowry. Maintaining a gently comic tone throughout most of the proceedings, the story dovetails almost imperceptibly into tragedy. The musical score is based upon Tchaikovsky’s 5th, with a few Russian folk songs woven in.
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Fei Mu – Kong Fuzi AKA Confucius (1940)

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Confucius (Chinese: 孔夫子; pinyin: Kǒng Fūzǐ) is a 1940 Chinese film directed by Fei Mu. Produced during the war, the film was released twice in the 1940s before being thought lost. In 2001, the film was rediscovered when an anonymous donor sent a damaged copy of the print to the Hong Kong Film Archive (HKFA). The HKFA then spent seven years restoring the print which was finally screened to modern audiences at the 33rd Hong Kong International Film Festival in April 2009.
The film depicts Confucius’s later life, as he traveled across a China divided by war and strife in an ultimately futile effort to teach various warlords and kings his particular philosophy.
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