The Best B-Pictures Of The 1930sby Akira_Chimera | created - 23 Mar 2011 | updated - 3 weeks ago | Public
This list is dedicated to those pictures that are not much talked about or sometimes even sneered at. Most of these movies were made on a small budget but can be very entertaining nevertheless. That is, if you generally dig B-pictures of the sci-fi or horror genre, for example. Some of the entries might be considered trash, but I assure you that you will find only the hilarious ones here. So, if you are in the mood for a somewhat different movie that does not necessarily follow mainstream rules, chances are that you will find here what you are looking for.
As usual, don't hesitate to leave a comment if you feel up to it.
PS: The movies are sorted by year and not necessarily by my preference. This list is by no means complete as I will add new worthwhile films as I stumble across them.
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4. Chandu the Magician (1932)
Unrated | 71 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
When delusional madman Roxor kidnaps a scientist in hopes of using his death ray to achieve world dominance, he is opposed by Chandu, a powerful hypnotist and yogi.
5. The Phantom of Crestwood (1932)
Passed | 76 min | Crime, Mystery
Jenny Wren coerces banker Priam Andes to have a dinner party at his shorefront estate Crestwood, and instructs him to invite three other men, each of whom she plans to extort money from. ... See full summary »
7. Tarzan the Ape Man (1932)
Passed | 100 min | Action, Adventure, Romance
A trader and his daughter set off in search of the fabled graveyard of the elephants in deepest Africa, only to encounter a wild man raised by apes.
9. 6 Hours to Live (1932)
72 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi
A murder victim is brought back to life by a scientific experiment. However, the effects only last for six hours, and he must find his killer in that time.
10. Kongo (1932)
Passed | 86 min | Drama, Horror
This remake of West of Zanzibar (1928) made four years later tries to outdo the Lon Chaney original in morbidity. From a wheelchair a handicapped white man rules an area of Africa as a ... See full summary »
11. The Menace (1932)
64 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Ronald Quayle escapes from prison. He was sent there for murdering his father, based on the testimony of his stepmother, Caroline. An explosion disfigures him, but plastic surgery gives him... See full summary »
12. The Son of Kong (1933)
Passed | 70 min | Adventure, Comedy
The men who captured the giant ape King Kong return to Skull Island and find his likewise gigantic but far more friendly son.
Votes: 3,120 | Gross: $1.34M
16. Supernatural (1933)
Passed | 65 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
A serial black widow murderess returns to life in the body of a young woman to exact revenge on a former lover, a phony spiritualist who betrayed her.
18. White Woman (1933)
68 min | Drama
A nightclub singer marries the rich owner of a rubber plantation. When she returns with him to his estate in Malaysia, she finds out that he is cruel, vicious and insanely jealous. She and ... See full summary »
20. Secret of the Chateau (1934)
Passed | 66 min | Crime, Mystery, Romance
Inspector Marotte, attending an auction of rare collectible books previously ownded by the recently murdered M. Le Duc de Poisse, hopes he can catch his old nemesis Prahec, a murderer and ... See full summary »
21. The Ninth Guest (1934)
Passed | 65 min | Horror, Mystery
Eight strangers are invited to spend the night in a penthouse apartment. After being wined and dined, a voice on the radio informs them that they will be murdered unless they manage to outwit the ninth guest: Death.
22. Tarzan and His Mate (1934)
Unrated | 104 min | Action, Adventure
The idyllic life of Tarzan and Jane is challenged by men on safari who come seeking ivory, and come seeking Jane as well.
24. Werewolf of London (1935)
Not Rated | 75 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror
The juice of a rare Tibetan flower is the only thing that keeps Dr. Glendon from turning into a werewolf during a full moon.
26. The Lone Wolf Returns (1935)
68 min | Mystery
Once a jewel thief always a jewel thief? Yes and no. Yes if you consider the fact that Michael Lanyard also known as the Lone Wolf once retired from the "trade" but relapses back into his ... See full summary »
28. The Walking Dead (1936)
Approved | 66 min | Crime, Horror, Sci-Fi
After hapless pianist and ex-con John Elman is framed for murder, he is resurrected by a scientist after his execution.
29. Dracula's Daughter (1936)
Approved | 71 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror
Hungarian countess Marya Zaleska seeks the aid of a noted psychiatrist, hoping to free herself of a mysterious evil influence.
30. The Case of the Black Cat (1936)
Approved | 66 min | Crime, Mystery, Drama
An bedridden eccentric millionaire, anticipating his own murder, hires Mason to help him rewrite his will, and the lawyer ends up defending the caretaker's cat.
32. The Man Who Lived Again (1936)
66 min | Horror, Sci-Fi
Dr. Laurience, a brilliant but unstable scientist experimenting with transferring minds, becomes vengeful when his magnate patron withdraws his support.
35. Think Fast, Mr. Moto (1937)
Not Rated | 70 min | Adventure, Crime, Drama
On a freighter going from San Francisco to Shanghai Mr. Moto solves mysteries caused by a gang of smugglers. First of the series.
40. The Man Who Cried Wolf (1937)
Approved | 68 min | Crime, Drama
An actor continually confesses to murders he didn't commit, figuring that the police won't believe him when he confesses to a murder that he actually does intend to commit.
41. Mr. Wong, Detective (1938)
Passed | 69 min | Adventure, Crime, Drama
When a chemical manufacturer is killed after asking detective James Wong to help him, Wong investigates this and two subsequent murders. He uncovers a international spy ring hoping to steal... See full summary »
42. Mr. Moto's Gamble (1938)
Approved | 72 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
When the #1 heavyweight contender is mysteriously poisoned during a bout, Moto knows that identifying the gambler who placed large bets against him is the key to solving the murder.
44. The Black Doll (1938)
Approved | 66 min | Comedy, Mystery, Romance
Nicholas Rood, dishonest mine owner, finds a Black Doll on his desk and knows that vengeance is about to overtake him for murdering his former partner. He is knifed as he talks to his ... See full summary »
45. The Terror (1938)
64 min | Crime, Mystery
A mysterious criminal mastermind plots a spectacular gold robbery, then after the robbery is completed he makes sure his gang is caught by the police, keeps the gold and disappears. After ... See full summary »
46. Mr. Moto Takes a Chance (1938)
Approved | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
In the jungle near Angkor Wat in Cambodia, Mr. Moto poses as an ineffectual archaeologist and a venerable holy man with mystical powers to help foil two insurgencies against the government.
47. Mysterious Mr. Moto (1938)
Approved | 62 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Mr. Moto has himself imprisoned on Devil's Island so he can help his cellmate (Ames) escape and thereby get the goods on a gang of international killers.
48. The Saint in New York (1938)
Approved | 69 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Simon Templar, the Saint, is brought to New York. His search for the identity of "the Big Fellow" takes him through many dangerous situations.
49. I Accuse (1938)
95 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi
After serving in the trenches of World War I, Jean Diaz recoils with such horror that he renounces love and personal pleasure to immerse himself in scientific research, seeking a machine to... See full summary »
50. Arrest Bulldog Drummond (1938)
Approved | 57 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi
The invention of a war machine, that brings to explosion everything one wants to, puts Scotland Yard and Captain Drummond into alarm.
52. Danger on the Air (1938)
Approved | 70 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Caesar Kluck, soft-drink magnate, is found dead in the office of a big radio-broadcasting company. Benjamin Franklin Butts, a sound engineer, discovers that Kluck met his death from ... See full summary »
53. Mr. Moto's Last Warning (1939)
Approved | 71 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Moto thwarts a ruthless band of international agents who try to foment an international incident by mining the entrance to the Suez Canal and blaming the British.
54. Tower of London (1939)
Approved | 92 min | Drama, History
In the 15th century Richard Duke of Gloucester, aided by his club-footed executioner Mord, eliminates those ahead of him in succession to the throne, then occupied by his brother King ... See full summary »
55. Mr. Wong in Chinatown (1939)
Approved | 71 min | Mystery
A pretty Chinese woman, seeking help from San Francisco detective James Lee Wong, is killed by a poisoned dart in his front hall, having time only to scrawl "Captain J" on a sheet of paper.... See full summary »
56. The Mystery of Mr. Wong (1939)
Approved | 68 min | Mystery
Detective tries to solve the murder of antiques collector who was in possession of a famous jewel known as "The Eye of the Daugther of The Moon."
58. The Human Monster (1939)
Not Rated | 73 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery
Insurance agent-physician collects on policies of men murdered by a disfigured resident of the home for the blind where he acts as doctor-on-call.
59. The Man They Could Not Hang (1939)
Unrated | 64 min | Crime, Horror, Sci-Fi
When Dr. Savaard's experiment in cryonics is interrupted by the short-sighted authorities, his volunteer dies, and he is condemned to death. He vows vengeance if he can survive his own hanging.
60. The Return of Doctor X (1939)
Approved | 62 min | Horror, Mystery, Sci-Fi
A hotshot reporter and a young doctor team up to investigate a series of grisly murders and a mysterious sample of synthetic blood.
61. The Saint in London (1939)
Passed | 72 min | Action, Comedy, Crime
The Saint returns to London and with the help of an American pickpocket and a beautiful adventuress breaks a counterfeiting ring.
63. Mr. Moto Takes a Vacation (1939)
Approved | 65 min | Action, Crime, Drama
Disguised as an Austrian archaeologist, Moto helps unearth the priceless crown of the legendary Queen of Sheba and sans disguise defends it from a variety of thugs and criminals.
64. The House of Fear (1939)
Approved | 67 min | Crime, Thriller, Drama
A detective goes undercover as a producer to investigate an actor's murder, which occurred during the performance of a play. The actor's body disappeared shortly after the crime, and his ... See full summary »
65. Mr. Moto in Danger Island (1939)
Passed | 64 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
The U.S. government asks Mr. Moto to go to Puerto Rico to investigate diamond smuggling after an earlier investigator is murdered.
66. The Lone Wolf Spy Hunt (1939)
Passed | 71 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime
A group of "spies" is after the plans for an anti-aircraft gun, and the leader uses the opportunity to embroil the Lone Wolf in the plot. Trying to settle an old score, this shady character... See full summary »
67. The Witness Vanishes (1939)
Approved | 66 min | Action, Adventure, Crime
Railroaded to an insane asylum twenty years ago by four men who had taken over his newspaper, Lucius Marplay, publisher of the London Sun, escapes with the sole intent of murdering the four... See full summary »
68. Mystery of the White Room (1939)
Approved | 58 min | Crime, Mystery, Romance
In the middle of an eye-surgery operation in a large hospital, the lights in the operating room go out and the chief surgeon is murdered. It is the job of Police-Detective Spencer to figure... See full summary »