1931-1940

Pál Fejös – Marie, légende hongroise aka Spring Shower (1932)

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Fejos’s Spring Shower is one of the key Hungarian films of the 1930s and 1940s to explore the miserable lives led by maidservants. It tells the story of Mari, an austerely beautiful young peasant girl played by the French star, Annabella. Mari is seduced beneath a flowering tree by the admirer of one of the daughters of the prosperous family for whom she works, becomes pregnant and is cast out. Read More »

Robert Bresson – Les Affaires publiques (1934)

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Quote:
Bresson’s first film is, totally uncharacteristically, a slapstick comedy, centred around two neighbouring republics, Crogandia and Miremia, and the various disasters that befall the ceremonial unveiling of a statue, the launching of a ship, and the crash-landing of a Miremian pilot in Crogandian territory. Read More »

Erich Engels – Sherlock Holmes – Die graue Dame (1937)

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A bizarre cash-in, Die Graue Dame is a quasi-Holmes picture based on a theatrical play entirely unrelated to the works of Doyle and released shortly after the Bruno Güttner-starring Der Hund von Baskerville (1937). Here, young Jimmy Ward – played by Hermann Speelmans (1906-1960), who’d featured in the vile Nazi propaganda feature Hitlerjunge Quex: ein Film vom Opfergeist der Deutschen Jugend (1933), an immorality tale designed to drum up recruitment into the Hitler Youth – infiltrates a criminal gang, only to reveal at the last moment that he is, in fact, none other than an undercover Sherlock Holmes. One can only presume that the ‘John’ – who, according to the credits list, acts as Holmes’ ‘servant’ – was intended to be none other than the hapless Dr Watson. ~Alan Barnes, Sherlock Holmes on Screen Read More »

Aleksandr Andriyevsky – Gibel sensatsii aka Loss of Feeling (1935)

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Quote:
This Russian sci-fi film, an adaptation of the Czech classic novel that gave the world the term “robot,” tells the tale of an idealistic inventor who designs strong and intelligent robots to do human work. Unfortunately, the machines are utterly soulless. When factory bosses begin attempting to replace all people with the new robots, the displaced workers revolt. allmovie.com Read More »

Robert Wiene – Panik in Chicago (1931)

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Beyond Caligari: The Films of Robert Wiene (Uli Jung, Walter Schatzberg), pp 166 ff.
link

Panik in Chicago was an enormous success in all major cities in Germany, as reported in the press. “The D.L.S. branches in Düsseldorf and Frankfurt a.M. had such record bookings for the film Panik in Chicago during the following two weeks that several new copies had to be distributed in these districts because the available subsidiary copies could not fulfill the demand for screenings. Other reports refer to the unusual popular acclaim the film enjoyed in Leipzig, Halle, Munich, and Stuttgart. Read More »

George B. Seitz – Gallant Sons (1940)

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Synopsis: from TCM
Johnny Davis, the son of gambler “Natural” Davis, Byron “By” Newbold, the son of crusading newspaper editor Barton Newbold, and Kate Pendleton, the daughter of Clare Pendleton, a wealthy widow and sportswoman, are schoolmates. Barton Newbold, who is determined to publicize Natural’s illicit activities, organizes a raid on Natural’s casino, which Natural foils by quickly transforming the gambling room into a musical recital. Newbold’s men follow Natural to Lucille Baker’s apartment, where Natural accuses her of blackmailing him and his sweetheart Clare, until he realizes that Lucille is dead. Natural finds a gun near the body, and as soon as he picks it up, Newbold’s men enter and accuse him of murder. Read More »

Edward H. Griffith – Biography of a Bachelor Girl (1935)

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PLOT SUMMARY
from IMDb user reviews
Robert Montgomery is an editor for a magazine and he has convinced the owner to finance a scheme. Montgomery wants to convince a bohemian artist (Ann Harding) to write her supposedly scandalous autobiography to boost the magazine’s sales… Read More »