Tag Archives: 1940s

Two Guys from Milwaukee (1946) David Butler, Dennis Morgan, Jack Carson, Joan Leslie, Comedy, Romance, Drama

Two Guys from Milwaukee (1946)
Balkan Prince Henry has two wishes, to meet Lauren Bacall and see the “real” America. He befriends cabbie Buzz Williams and, without knowing the microphone is live, the two stage a debate on democracy versus monarchy broadcast back to the Prince’s homeland. A plebiscite there puts Henry out of a job. Flying to MIlwaukee to become a beer salesman, he meets Bacall on the seat next to his, but a tap on his shoulder means he must give up his seat (and dream) to Bogie.

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Murder, My Sweet (1944) Edward Dmytryk, Dick Powell, Claire Trevor, Anne Shirley, Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Murder, My Sweet (Edward Dmytryk, 1945)
This adaptation of the Raymond Chandler novel ‘Farewell, My Lovely’, renamed for the American market to prevent filmgoers mistaking it for a musical (for which Powell was already famous) has private eye Philip Marlowe hired by Moose Malloy, a petty crook just out of prison after a seven year stretch, to look for his former girlfriend, Velma, who has not been seen for the last six years. The case is tougher than Marlowe expected as his initially promising enquiries lead to a complex web of deceit involving bribery, perjury and theft, and where no one’s motivation is obvious, least of all Marlowe’s.

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Lady of Burlesque (1943) William A. Wellman, Barbara Stanwyck, Michael O’Shea, J. Edward Bromberg, Comedy, Music, Mystery, Romance

Lady of Burlesque (1943)
Sassy Dixie Daisy is the hot new attraction at a former opera house that’s been turned into a burlesque theater. She’s popular with the customers, although not with Lolita La Verne, a stuck-up diva who was hoping she’d get the top spot. Also complicating matters is the return of the Princess Nirvena, the show’s former star who once had a fling with the boss. When the Princess blackmails her way into the top spot, Dixie is none too pleased. When both Lolita and the Princess are murdered, Dixie becomes a prime suspect. She then sets up a trap to nail the real killer.

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The Farmer’s Daughter (1947) H.C. Potter, Loretta Young, Joseph Cotten, Ethel Barrymore, Drama, Romance

The Farmer's Daughter (1947)
Swedish-American farmer’s daughter Katrin ‘Katie’ Holstrom leaves the farm to study nursing in the big, wicked city. Thanks to a chiseling acquaintance, her tuition and expense money disappears the first day, and she’s forced to get a job…as a domestic for congressman Glenn Morley. Impressed by her political awareness as well as her many charms and capabilities, Glenn is soon infatuated with Katie, and she with him, but their feelings remain unspoken…until Katie speaks up at a party rally and is abruptly thrust into politics herself.

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Two Guys from Texas (1948) David Butler, Dennis Morgan, Jack Carson, Dorothy Malone, Comedy, Musical

Two Guys from Texas (1948)
In this western-musical comedy, a remake of Cowboy from Brooklyn (1938), two vaudevillians find themselves stranded on a Texas dude ranch. Comic mayhem ensues as they cope with time in jail, a rodeo, and eventually love. They also help save the ranch from two greedy thugs trying to force the owners to sell. The story includes a Friz Freleng animated dream sequence featuring Bugs Bunny and caricatures of the two actors. Songs include: “Every Day I Love You Just a Little Bit More,” “Hankerin’,” “I Don’t Care If It Rains All Night,” “There’s Music In the Land,” and “I Wanna Be a Cowboy In the Movies” (Jule Styne, Sammy Cahn).

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South of St. Louis (1949) Ray Enright, Joel McCrea, Alexis Smith, Zachary Scott, Western

South of St. Louis (1949)
Produced by Milton Sperling’s United States Pictures, South of St. Louis was given a widespread release by Warner Bros. The story begins in the last days of the Civil War. Chased off their property by guerillas, ranching partners Kip Davis (Joel McCrea), Charlie Burns (Zachary Scott) and Lee Prince (Douglas Kennedy) head southward to seek out a new life. Davis and Burns go into the gun-running business, while Prince joins the Confederate Army. Kip and Charlie battle over the affections of saloon gal Rouge de Lisle (Alexis Smith), a turn of events that falls into the plans of rival gunrunner Luke Cottrell (Victor Jory). The three former friends soon find themselves enemies, and thereby hangs the plotline. Curiously, Dorothy Malone, cast as the “good” heroine, seems to be more worldly and cunning than hard-boiled temptress Alexis Smith. Originally filmed in Technicolor, South of St. Louis was for many years available only in its black-and-white, TV-print form.

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Joan of Arc (1948) Victor Fleming, Ingrid Bergman, José Ferrer, Francis L. Sullivan, Biography, Drama, History

Joan of Arc (1948)
During the Hundred Years’ War, peasant girl Joan of Arc (Ingrid Bergman) hears voices instructing her to save France from the English. Convinced that these unsummoned murmurings are divine messages from God, Joan consults the uncrowned Charles VII (Jose Ferrer) who, startled by the accuracy of her clairvoyance, assembles an army and installs her as its leader and spiritual guide. Her victorious forces reclaim much of their homeland from the English, but she herself falls into enemy hands.

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She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949) John Ford, John Wayne, Joanne Dru, John Agar, Western

She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949)
After Custer and the 7th Cavalry are wiped out by Indians, everyone expects the worst. Capt. Nathan Brittles is ordered out on patrol but he’s also required to take along Abby Allshard, wife of the Fort’s commanding officer, and her niece, the pretty Olivia Dandridge, who are being evacuated for their own safety. Brittles is only a few days away from retirement and Olivia has caught the eye of two of the young officers in the Company, Lt. Flint Cohill and 2nd Lt. Ross Pennell. She’s taken to wearing a yellow ribbon in her hair, a sign that she has a beau in the Cavalry, but refuses to say for whom she is wearing it.

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