Our third episode focuses on the small window of films made in Hollywood between 1930 and 1934, known usually as ‘Pre-Code’. The censorship rules of the ‘Hays Code’ was introduced to Hollywood studios in 1930 but was not actually enforced until late 1934. During these years studios were pumping out films testing the limits of propriety, usually with strong central female characters using their wiles to break out of poverty and marital drudgery. This month’s He’s a Keeper is devoted to the charming Melvyn Douglas. Lastly, an honourable mention to the late Setsuko Hara.
Our third episode focuses on the small window of films made in Hollywood between 1930 and 1934, known usually as ‘Pre-Code’. The censorship rules of the ‘Hays Code’ was introduced to Hollywood studios in 1930 but was not actually enforced until late 1934.
A Woman’s Face (1941) Dir. George Cukor. [DVD] MGM.
Baby Face (1933) Dir. Alfred E. Green. [DVD] Warner Bros.
Bed of Roses (1933) Dir. Gregory La Cava. [DVD] RKO.
Doherty, T. (1999) Pre-Code Hollywood: Sex, Immorality and Insurrection in American
Cinema 1930-1934. New York: Columbia University Press.
Douglas, M. (1986) See You at the Movies: The Autobiography of Melvyn Douglas (with Tom Arthur). Boston: University Press of America.
Jacobs, L. (1991) The Wages of Sin: Censorship and the Fallen Woman 1928-1942. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press.
LaSalle, M. (2000) Complicated Women: Sex and Power in Pre-Code Hollywood. New York: St. Martin’s Press.
Loos, A. (1974) Kiss Hollywood Goodbye. London: W.H. Allen.
Loy, M. (1987) Being and Becoming (with James Kotsilibas-Davis). London: Bloomsbury.
Brooks, Louise. (1974) Lulu in Hollywood. USA: University of Minnesota Press.
Ninotchka (1939) Dir. Ernst Lubitsch. [DVD] MGM.
Penthouse (1933) Dir. W.S. Van Dyke. [DVD] MGM.
Possessed (1931) Dir. Clarence Brown. [DVD] MGM.
Red Headed Woman (1932) Dir. Jack Conway. [DVD] MGM.
Susan Lenox: Her Fall and Rise (1931) Dir. Robert Z. Leonard [DVD] MGM.
The Divorcee (1930) Dir. Robert Z. Leonard. [DVD] MGM.
The Easiest Way (1931) Dir. Jack Conway [DVD] MGM.
Theodora Goes Wild (1936) Dir. Richard Boleslawski. [YouTube] Columbia.
Third Finger, Left Hand (1940) Dir. Robert Z Leonard. [DVD] MGM.
THAT scene in Possessed – www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWmI88_hP0M