Tag Archives: 1930s

Fritz Lang – You and Me (1938)

An altruistic department-store owner hires ex-convicts in order to give them a second chance at life. Unfortunately, one of the convicts he hires recruits two of his fellow ex-convicts in a plan to rob the store. Read More »

Vladimir Legoshin – Beleet parus odinokiy AKA The Lonely White Sail (1937)

Mentioned in Henri Langlois: Phantom of the Cinematheque:
Throughout the Occupation, Langlois remained active and naturally kept on showing films in this theater, the Museum of Mankind Theater, at great risk. A week or two after war broke out, when Germany declared war on the USSR, he showed us there the film The Lonely White Sail, about the sailors’ revolt that Eisenstein had depicted in Battleship Potemkin. When it ended, the crowd was mute with admiration. And someone said (maybe it was me), ‘Now that screen stands for freedom!'” – Jean Rouch Read More »

Kajirô Yamamoto – Enoken no chakkiri kinta AKA Enoken’s Kinta the Pickpocket (1937)

A famous sound film comedy by Kajira Yamamoto, best known for being the mentor of Akira Kurosawa. This is actually considered a major classic of physical comedy in Japan and remains perhaps the most fondly remembered vehicle for the famous comedian Enoken, who was a major star during the pre-war period.

A comedic tale told in four parts, this film follows the antics of the pickpocket Kinta as he is pursued by a low ranking deputy named Kurakichi. The two get into all manner of peccadilloes and encounter a range of peculiar characters as their game of cat and mouse moves across the countryside in the last days of the Tokugawa Shogunate. The title role is played by Enomoto Kenichi (known by his performance name Enoken), a star of screen and stage. Kinta the Pickpocket showcases his indefatigable energy and talent for physical comedy. Read More »

Taizô Fuyushima – Kagoya hangan AKA The Palanquin Carrier Magistrate (1935)

Two cowardly palanquin carriers know the culprit of a murder but are too scared to report it to the police. In the mean time, an innocent man is arrested as the murderer and chaos ensues. Read More »

Kajirô Yamamoto – Wagahai wa neko de aru AKA I am a Cat (1936)

It’s the first film adaptation of Natsumi Soseki’s novel “I Am a Cat”, but I was a little disappointed when I saw it with high expectations, because it’s less than 90 minutes long and there’s no monologue about the cat, so it’s just me in the middle of the human drama. Before that, there are only a few scenes in which I appear.

The world situation at the time of the Russo-Japanese War has been replaced by that of World War I (the attack on Qingdao is shown in a newspaper article. However, since it was filmed before the war, the scenery has a certain feel to it. This atmosphere is something you can’t get in a postwar film. Read More »

Julien Duvivier – Un carnet de bal AKA Christine AKA Dance Program (1937)

A rich widow, nostalgic for the lavish parties of her youth, embarks on a journey to reconnect with the many suitors who once courted her. In doing so, she sets off on a course of discovery, both of herself and of how greatly the world has changed in two decades. Julien Duvivier’s smash hit is a wry, visually inventive tale of romantic pragmatism that deftly combines comedy and drama. Read More »

Kurt Neumann – Secret of the Blue Room (1933)

Twenty years after 3 murders occur in a castle’s “blue room”, three men who each want to marry a beautiful girl decide to spend a night in the room to prove their bravery to her. Read More »