42nd Street (1933)

A selection of films from the 1930s that helped establish the film industry as “recession proof“
Box Office Gold: Cinema of the 1930s
Monday, September 14, 2009
8:30pm @ Central Library

Perhaps the most famous Busby Berkeley musical, 42nd Street follows a cast of characters behind a lavish Broadway production called “Pretty Lady,” with memorable songs like “Shuffle Off to Buffalo” and “Young and Healthy.” Not Rated. (89 min.)

Film Series - Box Office Gold: Cinema of the 1930s

The Great Depression corresponded almost exactly with the Golden Age of Hollywood, when the studio system produced many of its most memorable stars and classic films. Economic hardship hurt film attendance, but even during the worst of the Depression, movie theaters still attracted more than 60 million film-lovers a week. The Kansas City Public Library screens a selection of those films that helped establish the film industry as “recession proof” with Box Office Gold every Monday and Saturday throughout September 2009 in the Stanley H. Durwood Film Vault at the Central Library, 14 W. 10th St.

This film series complements Soul of a People: Writing America’s Story, a series of events about the Federal Writers’ Project being held to commemorate the 75th anniversary of this New Deal agency.

The film line-up on Mondays at 6:30 p.m. includes:

42nd Street (1933) on September 14. Perhaps the most famous Busby Berkeley musical, the film follows a cast of characters behind a lavish Broadway production called “Pretty Lady,” with memorable songs like “Shuffle Off to Buffalo” and “Young and Healthy.” Not Rated. (89 min.)

My Man Godfrey (1936) on September 21. Carole Lombard earned an Oscar nomination for her role in this landmark screwball comedy that centers on Godfrey (William Powell), a bum hired as a wealthy family’s butler who has his own notion about wealth redistribution. Not Rated. (94 min.)

Gunga Din (1939) on September 28. This epic war film set in 19th century India follows three British soldiers aided by a native waterbearer in their quest to stop a revival of the ancient Thuggee cult. Starring Cary Grant, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Sam Jaffe, and Joan Fontaine. Not Rated. (117 min.)

The film line-up on Saturdays at 1:30 p.m. includes:

Grand Hotel (1932) on September 5. Winner of the Oscar for Best Picture, this film boasts the original all-star cast: Greta Garbo, John Barrymore, Joan Crawford, Lionel Barrymore, and Wallace Beery. Based on a novel by Vicki Baum. Not Rated. (112 min.)

Duck Soup (1933) on September 12. The classic Marx Brothers comedy stars Groucho as Rufus T. Firefly, the newly installed leader of an impoverished fictional country already infiltrated by spies Chicolini (Chico) and Pinky (Harpo). Not Rated. (68 min.)

Mutiny on the Bounty (1935) on September 19. This classic MGM action-adventure won the Oscar for Best Picture and proved to be the highest grossing film that year, with $4.5 million in receipts. Starring Charles Laughton as a vindictive ship captain and Clark Gable as the first mate who leads the revolt. Not Rated. (132 min.)

Angels with Dirty Faces (1938) on September 26. Gangster films defined James Cagney’s career, and in this film his performance defines the genre. Cagney earned an Oscar nod as a mobster who takes a murder rap after defending the life of a priest. Not Rated. (97 min.)