Anne Shirley

  • P.J. Wolfson – Boy Slaves (1939)

    1931-1940DramaP.J. WolfsonUSA

    The lurid title is tabloid drama but the film is a surprisingly effective drama of teen hobos rounded up and shunted into working like prisoners on a rural turpentine farm by unscrupulous racketeers. Probably made as RKOs answer to The East Side Kids or The Little Tough Guys or (pre) Bowery Boys, this even has lookalikes to Huntz hall and Frankie Darro. The lead juvenile Roger Daniel is excellent and research reveals he almost immediately went straight into obscurity (maybe the War intervened as he was 15 in 1940) and only turned up in several Monogram teen/rural pix and later their JOE PALOOKA films of the mid 40s in a bit part. Pity, as he is a good young actor. The older teen Tim played by James Mc Callion is exactly like Frankie Darro but plays his part a lot like a young Cagney. Far more successful as an actor and can be seen briefly in NORTH BY NORTHWEST. He had a long film and TV career right up until 1990. One of the kids, Walter Tetley ended up being the voice of Sherman in the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons in the 60s. BOY SLAVES is a good small RKO drama worth catching. There is a very clever scene early in the film by a swamp with interesting model work using a model of a freight train ‘in the distance’.
    (from IMDB)Read More »

  • John Ford – Steamboat Round the Bend (1935)

    John Ford1931-1940ComedyDramaUSA

    “Steamboat ‘Round the Bend” was a personal project for Ford who saw the novel (Ford purchased the adaptation rights from writer Ben Lucien Burman) as a potential opportunity to work with his good friend Will Rogers. The pictures he directed at Fox were usually lighter affairs with a sustained focus on entertainment rather than art. Ford is generally not remembered for such films because his precise framing and noble themes brought him far more recognition and acclaim. Nevertheless, Ford still had the sense to know how to present a good comedy.Read More »

  • King Vidor – Stella Dallas (1937)

    1931-1940DramaKing VidorRomanceUSA

    A working-class woman is willing to do whatever it takes to give her daughter a socially promising future.Read More »

  • Dudley Nichols – Government Girl (1943)

    1941-1950ClassicsComedyDudley NicholsUSA


    Washington DC in the war. The machinery of government is a hive of endless if not seamless activity. Arnament production is the name of the game, by fair means or foul. Ed Browne, more used to making cars in Detroit, is having to try and get planes made in this maelstrom. Luckily or unluckily, he finds he has a secretary who knows the political ropes – and her own mind.Read More »

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