For the second Breening Thursday article, I am going to breen an early Shurlock era film, High Society from 1956. This film is part of the large, interesting genre of 1950s musical remakes of 1930s and early 40s screwball comedies. This particular film is a remake of The Philadelphia Story from 1940 with Katharine Hepburn, … Continue reading Breening Thursdays: 2. “High Society” from 1956
Why was there a period of un-Codish films in 1941 and 1942? From 1934 to 1954, films could generally be considered proper because of complete adherence to the Motion Picture Production Code of 1930. There were occasional, small breaches when Joseph Breen, the director, was on vacation, in the hospital, or when he chose … Continue reading 1941-1942: A Crack in the Code
This article is part of the Reel Infatuations blogathon: https://silverscreenings.org/2017/06/20/reel-infatuation-blogathon-starts-friday/ 1938 was a big year for Lew Ayres. His third film that year was Holiday at Columbia, which also featured Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant and was directed by George Cukor. It brought him to MGM's attention, and they signed him to a contract. This … Continue reading Jerry Flynn, The “King of the Newsboys” in 1938
This article is part of the Reel Infatuation blogathon: https://silverscreenings.org/2017/06/20/reel-infatuation-blogathon-starts-friday/ When one thinks of pre-Code men, not many noble, upstanding men come to mind. There are lots of criminals, lechers, and brutes, but Lew Ayres received many of the best roles for decent young men. Perhaps it was because he had such a kind, youthful … Continue reading Michael Rand in “Night World” from 1932
I have been writing on WordPress since October 17, 2016. During that time, I have received a lot of kindness and support from my fellow authors. In return, I am going to nominate three other authors for awards. I am nominating Silver Screenings for a Sunshine Blogger Award: https://silverscreenings.org/ I am nominating Champagne for Lunch … Continue reading Awards and Blogathons
Judge James K. Hardy, played by Lionel Barrymore in A Family Affair from 1937 and Lewis Stone in the other fourteen movies in the series, is the father in all but the last of the sixteen Andy Hardy movies; he is understood to have died between the fifteenth and the sixteenth film. Judge Hardy is … Continue reading Judge James K. Hardy: A Hollywood Father Who is a Mentor for All Ages
Last Monday, I sent a letter describing the Pure Entertainment Preservation Society's goals to each of the seven major motion picture studios in Hollywood. On the following Friday, I called the studios in Hollywood. It is easy to reach the secretaries of the heads of the company; all you have to know is someone's name … Continue reading Saturdays of the Future: 5. Contact the Studios Now!
Variety referred to Joseph I. Breen's process of self-regulation as “breening” or “joebreening,” since the PCA relied heavily on his judgment and discernment regarding films. Starting today, Thursday is going to be “Breening Thursday” on PEPS; every week, I will post an article in which I will “breen” a pre-Code or Shurlock era film. … Continue reading Breening Thursday: 1. “Night World” from 1932
Who was the first gangster to step onto the Silver Screen? From 1930 to 1934, a genre known as the gangster film thrived in the Warner Brothers studio. Although gangster films continued to be made in the Code and post-Code years, they were never the same as they had been in the pre-Code years. The … Continue reading Louie Ricarno: Hollywood’s First, Forgotten Gangster
The name Joseph I. Breen doesn't mean much to many people these days, yet it is the name of one of America's greatest influencers. If you read my last article in the Saturdays of the Future series, you already know about Mr. Breen. If you haven't read this article, I encourage you to do so … Continue reading Saturdays of the Future: 4. Joseph I. Breen, National Hero or Public Enemy?