The Pre-code Weekend
Friday May 10th through Sunday May 12th, 2013
At The Carlton Cinema, 20 Carlton Street, Toronto, Ontario.
Toronto Film Society is dedicating this weekend to Pre-Code films. What exactly does Pre-Code mean? This term refers to films made before the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, under Will H. Hays with Joseph L. Breen, director of the Code Administration, put into strict effect on July 1, 1934 the self-regulatory code of ethics created in 1930. The code set forth general standards of “good taste” and specific do’s and don’ts concerning what could and could not be shown in American movies. Among the general principles of the code was the requirement that “no picture shall be produced which will lower the standards of those who see it. Hence the sympathy of the audience should never be thrown to the side of crime, wrongdoing, evil or sin.” The Code had a long reaching effect on American film producers and their films until the Supreme Court brought a sweeping revision to the Code in 1966 due to the pressures of social change. So please join us to see films that were racy, risqué, and even outrageous this coming May, 2013.
The cost for the weekend is $150.00. It includes all 24 films and 3 lunches at the theatre. There are limited seats available so book early. The deadline to book for the “Pre-Code” weekend is April 12th, 2013. After that time, if seats are still available, we will be offering a daily rate of $65 for the Friday or Saturday and $50 for Sunday. Rush seats for individual films will be available for $10.00 at the door prior to each screening. Check out the website for screening times. All screenings are at the Carlton Cinema, 20 Carlton Street, Toronto, Ontario. Film screenings begin at 9:00 a.m. on Friday and Saturday, Sunday at 10:00 a.m.
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|Director:||Alfred E. Green|
This is the film that sparked the Code! Sold to the public with the salacious tagline, "She had it and made it pay". Baby Face is one the most sexually charged and notorious films of the Pre-Code era.
The Cheat is a remake of the 1915 film of the same name by Cecil B. DeMille, but with 100% more Tallulah Bankhead. She lies, she gambles, and she steals and causes all kinds of trouble.
Vintage comedy of three gold-diggers who have sugar daddies to keep them in the lap of luxury. You have to watch it to find out the word the Greeks had for them.
Kay Francis is a powerful, competent business woman in need of an attractive young male assistant. We bet he doesn't mind overtime.
|Director:||Cecil B. DeMille|
Angela Brooks means to win back her uninterested husband with a little help from a masquerade ball, a devil's mask, and a very alluring gown.
|Director:||Jean de Limur|
A cautionary tale about what happens when a man neglects his beautiful but restless wife. Adultery comes with a heavy price for which she pays. A rare appearance by the legendary actress Jeanne Eagels.
Idealistic attorney Anton Adam makes headlines when he prosecutes a prominent New York racketeer. He also becomes a high profile target for a frame up from a sexy actress.
|Director:||William A. Wellman|
A New Orleans prostitute, a murder, and a lam to the Bahamas—this William Wellman classic could be the poster child for the Pre-Code era.
|Director:||Edward F. Cline|
A coquettish socialite sets her sights on an associate in her father's law firm, but has to fend off the advances of a greedy fortune-hunter and her voracious sister.
|Director:||Josef von Sternberg|
An American Tragedy is Josef von Sternberg's adaptation of Theodore Dreiser's novel by the same name. Full of turn-of-the-century sex, murder, and mayhem, even Dreiser was shocked by the film and (unsuccessfully) sued Paramount for libel. The much tamer version, A Place in the Sun, was made in 1951.
Born to be Bad was so "bad" it was rejected by the Hays Office twice and had to be re-cut twice before it was finally approved. Loretta Young plays a single mother who entertains (hint, hint) gentlemen to secure business contracts.
This film is about two professional gold diggers—Marie has her heart in her work, Wanda doesn't. Girls About Town is funnier than your average Pre-Code.
The Cabin in the Cotton is a Pre-Code departure by being rural instead of urban. But when you hear platinum blonde vamp/debutante Bette Davis drawl, "Ah'd love t' kiss ya, but ah jes washed ma hayuh" you know you're in the right place.
|Director:||Josef von Sternberg|
Do not miss the sultry Marlene Dietrich cooing sexy numbers like "Hot Voodoo" to a too-young-to-know-better Cary Grant.
|Director:||William A. Seiter|
Nancy Carroll is a pretty but virtuous small-town bank clerk who becomes the victim of a vicious rumour that she spent the night with a notorious womanizer. Can her childhood sweetheart save her?
Wealthy, married Francis yearns for excitement in her life and is captivated by debonair burglar Powel, in this witty, charming film.
|Director:||William A. Wellman|
Loretta Young is the classic hooker with a heart of gold, about to be saved by her prince - until her shady past catches up with her.
|Director:||Dwain Esper/Vival Sodar’t|
As the opening scroll tells us, Narcotic was "presented in the hope that the public may become aware of the terrific struggle to rid the world of drug addiction." What follows is odd and outrageous.
The Strange Love of Molly Louvain is the strange tale of the criminal, the unwed mother, the virtuous bellhop and the fast-talking newspaper man.
The much better remake of the 1931 Pre-Code Illicit, has one of the sexiest night club scenes—all action, no words.
What happens to a philandering high society seductress when her charms fail along with the Stock Market? Chatterton and Brent may be perverse, but are they ultimately in love?
Nude swim scene, political incorrectness, unmarried sex in the jungle—a perfect Pre-Code recipe for a day at the movies.
Theater usherette Bunny O'Day (Clara Bow) inadvertently becomes hostess of a private gambling den, and gets involved in a romance with a ne'er-do-well gambler.
New York nightclub owner Lady Lou (Mae West) has more men friends than you can shake a stick at. When Grant is invited by Mae to come up and see her sometime—he does!