Part one of this ginormous list - The Silents - is here.  And now, part two ...


39) All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)
During the transition from silence to sound, the ambition of film-makers shrank.  Large scale epic movies pretty much disappeared, replaced by films about people standing still in small rooms – so the primitive microphones could pick up the dialogue.  This part-silent, part-sound masterpiece was the last large-scale Hollywood movie for a while.

40) Laurel and Hardy Murder Case (1930)
41) Another Fine Mess (1930)
A point of order:  I’ve included a representative sample of Laurel and Hardy films in this list but, the reality is, every Laurel and Hardy film is essential viewing.

Every single Laurel and Hardy film is worth watching, just don't tell anyone, alright ...
42) Little Caesar (1930)
The film that made a star of Edward G, see.  It also set the template for every gangster film made since, see.  It definitely wasn’t the end of Rico!

43) Dracula (1931) 

Here is a short piece about the two different versions of Dracula ... I apologise about the TV presenter but, y'know, what can you do ...

44) Frankenstein (1931)
You can do quite a lot with people standing around in small rooms.  Frankenstein is clearly the better of these two films.  The Dracula to watch is actually the George Melford version, shot at the same time as the more-famous but less interesting Tod Browning version.

One of the most famous, and oft-parodied sequences in all American cinema ...

45) City Lights (1931)
Of course, when you’re the most famous film-maker on the planet, you don’t have to bow to fashion.  Chaplin didn’t want to make films in sound, so Chaplin didn’t.

46) Public Enemy (1931)
47) M (1931)
The influence of German Expressionism still has the power to astonish.  M is every bit as remarkable and just as influential a piece of work as Fritz Lang’s other masterpiece – Metropolis.  You can watch it all here:

48) Vampyr (1932)
The last silent film on the list, although it does have short scenes of dialogue.  Film distributors were, for the first time, encountering problems with the language barrier.  Where a silent film could play in every country in the world, a sound film needed re-shooting or the new technology of re-dubbing.  Either was expensive so, one way around the problem, was to keep the amount of dialogue to a minimum.
49) I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932)
50)  Scarface (1932)

A good year for Paul Muni ... Two massive hits in one year and then, frankly, nothing much for the rest of his career.
51) Shanghai Express (1932)
52) Freaks (1932)
Browning’s fame rests on his 1931 Dracula, but it should rest on this film which, along with a lot of movies in these pre-Code, early sound days, has imagery so disturbing it lived in the memory of cineastes for the thirty years the movie was banned in Britain.

This film was decades ahead of its time.  Cold comfort to Browning, of course, since it effectively ended his career.  If David Lynch’s grotesques of the subconscious come from anywhere, it’s right here:

53) Music Box (1932)

So, this is what you have to go through to win a blessed Oscar ...
 As with all of the films listed, watching them on a computer via YouTube screen is far from the ideal way to watch a movie, so go out and buy this one, okay ...

54) 42nd Street (1933)
55) Gold Diggers of 1933 (d'uh)
56) Duck Soup (1933) 

Like Laurel and Hardy, there really is no such thing as a bad Marx Brothers film ...
 57) Queen Christina (1933)
58) King Kong (1933) 

Better than Jackson's remake (which is great, of course, but still ... ) and arguably better than any monster movie made since, this film is responsible for so many film-maker's passion, not least Ray Harryhausen.

59) Sons of the Desert (1933)
60) Invisible Man

Claude Rains wondering if his bum looks invisible in that ...
And this is what a fan-made trailer looks like:

61) Triumph of the Will (1934)

Riefenstahl was one of the finest visual artists ever to work in cinema and yet she and her work is widely reviled ... Can't think why ...
62) L'Atalante (1934)
63) Black Cat (1934)
64) Them Thar Hills (1934)
Both this film and its sequel Tit For Tat were nominated for Oscars.
65) It Happened One Night (1934) 

The film that ruined the male underwear industry ... Because:  If wearing a vest wasn't good enough for Clark Gable, it wasn't good enough for anyone else .

66) Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)
67) Thin Man (1934)
68) Captain Blood (1935)
69) Tit For Tat (1935)
The direct sequel to Them Thar Hills – and the only sequel the pair made – this film features another grudge-match between the boys and Brit co-star Charlie Hall, who appeared in some fifty of their films, but here is playing the same character and therefore remembers them from their previous encounter.  Imagine what Jimmy Finlayson’s life would have been like if he could remember every time they ruined his day!
70) Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)
71) A Night at the Opera (1935)

One of many classic routines from the film:

72) 39 Steps (1935)
73) Bride of Frankenstein (1935) 

One of those all-too-rare sequels that's better than the original.

74) Top Hat (1935)
75) Modern Times (1936)

76) Bohemian Girl (1936)
77) Swing Time (1936)
78) San Francisco (1936)
The first disaster movie, as such, and one of the first films to rely heavily on special effects.

Rather like Cameron's Titanic, you spend the movie twiddling your thumbs waiting for this ...

79) Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936)

80) Sabotage (1936)
81) Secret Agent (1936)
82) Things to Come (1936)

Wells was scathing in his review of Metropolis, ten years before, and felt the need to present his own vision of the future ... Professional jealousy, or what?
83) Captains Courageous (1937)
84) Lost Horizon (1937)
85) Way Out West (1937)

All together now ... On a mountain in Virginia, stands a lonesome pine ...
86) Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)

87) Jezebel (1938)
88) Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
Best sword-fight in any film.  Ever.

89) Angels with Dirty Faces (1938)

Of course, what Cagney really wanted to do was sing ...
90) Olympia (1938)
91) Bringing Up Baby (1938)
92) Lady Vanishes (1938)

1939 was the year when the world turned.  For some reason, as politics collapsed into disaster and millions of lives changed forever … Hollywood turned-out an unprecedented array of extraordinary films …

93) Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) 

Capra's inspirational fantasy about America's political machine - which essentially made James Stewart's career.
94) Stagecoach (1939)
95) Wizard of Oz (1939)

Lions and tigers and ... Oh no, no tigers; monkeys though ... Flying monkeys!

96) Goodbye Mr Chips (1939)
97) Hunchback of Notre dame (1939)
98) Gone With the Wind (1939)

One of the most famous movie posters ever created - although it is a re-issue poster from when the film was already a resounding success.
And, in case you don't know what the most-seen movie ever made looks like ...

99) Ninotchka (1939)

Yes, Garbo laughing was a big deal ... It was about as likely then as Von Trier making a comedy or Adam Sandler ... making a comedy.
100) Roaring Twenties (1939) 

The two giants of the gangster genre ... This movie was Pacino meets De Niro in Heat, only bigger.

No comments:

Post a Comment