Films of the '30s, Ranked

by solmaquina | created - 12 May 2013 | updated - 1 month ago | Public
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1. Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Not Rated | 75 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.9
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Mary Shelley reveals the main characters of her novel survived: Dr. Frankenstein, goaded by an even madder scientist, builds his monster a mate.

Director: James Whale | Stars: Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive, Valerie Hobson

Votes: 35,925

9/10

2. Duck Soup (1933)

Not Rated | 68 min | Comedy, Musical, War

8.0
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Rufus T. Firefly is named president/dictator of bankrupt Freedonia and declares war on neighboring Sylvania over the love of wealthy Mrs. Teasdale.

Director: Leo McCarey | Stars: Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx, Zeppo Marx

Votes: 49,595

9/10

3. A Night at the Opera (1935)

Not Rated | 96 min | Comedy, Music, Musical

8.0
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A sly business manager and two wacky friends of two opera singers help them achieve success while humiliating their stuffy and snobbish enemies.

Directors: Sam Wood, Edmund Goulding | Stars: Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, Harpo Marx, Kitty Carlisle

Votes: 26,677

8.5/10

4. City Lights (1931)

G | 87 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

8.6
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With the aid of a wealthy erratic tippler, a dewy-eyed tramp who has fallen in love with a sightless flower girl accumulates money to be able to help her medically.

Director: Charles Chaplin | Stars: Charles Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill, Florence Lee, Harry Myers

Votes: 125,561 | Gross: $0.02M

8/10

5. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1939)

Not Rated | 117 min | Drama, Romance

7.9
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In 15th century France, a gypsy girl is framed for murder by the infatuated Chief Justice, and only the deformed bellringer of Notre Dame Cathedral can save her.

Director: William Dieterle | Stars: Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara, Cedric Hardwicke, Thomas Mitchell

Votes: 8,609

8/10

6. Monkey Business (1931)

Not Rated | 77 min | Comedy, Musical

7.6
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On a transatlantic crossing, the Marx brothers get up to their usual antics and manage to annoy just about everyone on board the ship.

Director: Norman Z. McLeod | Stars: Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, The Marx Brothers, Chico Marx

Votes: 9,730

7.5/10

7. Animal Crackers (1930)

Passed | 97 min | Comedy, Musical

7.7
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Mayhem and zaniness ensue when a valuable painting goes missing during a party in honor of famed African explorer Captain Spaulding.

Director: Victor Heerman | Stars: Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, Chico Marx, The Marx Brothers

Votes: 11,495

7.5/10

8. Horse Feathers (1932)

Not Rated | 68 min | Comedy, Musical, Romance

7.7
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Quincy Adams Wagstaff, the new president of Huxley University, accidentally hires bumblers Baravelli and Pinky to help his school win the big football game against the rival Darwin University.

Director: Norman Z. McLeod | Stars: Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, Harpo Marx, The Marx Brothers

Votes: 10,084

7.5/10

9. Island of Lost Souls (1932)

Not Rated | 70 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

7.5
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An obsessed scientist conducts profane experiments in evolution, eventually establishing himself as the self-styled demigod to a race of mutated, half-human abominations.

Director: Erle C. Kenton | Stars: Charles Laughton, Bela Lugosi, Richard Arlen, Leila Hyams

Votes: 6,381

7.5/10

10. King Kong (1933)

Not Rated | 100 min | Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.9
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A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal ape who takes a shine to their female blonde star. He is then captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition.

Directors: Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack | Stars: Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot, Frank Reicher

Votes: 69,357 | Gross: $10.00M

7.5/10

11. Son of Frankenstein (1939)

Approved | 99 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.2
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One of the sons of Frankenstein finds his father's monster in a coma and revives him, only to find out he is controlled by Ygor who is bent on revenge.

Director: Rowland V. Lee | Stars: Boris Karloff, Basil Rathbone, Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill

Votes: 7,190

7/10

12. Modern Times (1936)

Passed | 87 min | Comedy, Drama, Family

8.5
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96 Metascore

The Tramp struggles to live in modern industrial society with the help of a young homeless woman.

Director: Charles Chaplin | Stars: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Henry Bergman, Tiny Sandford

Votes: 164,941 | Gross: $0.16M

7/10

13. The Most Dangerous Game (1932)

Not Rated | 63 min | Adventure, Horror, Mystery

7.2
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An insane hunter arranges for a ship to be wrecked on an island where he can indulge in some sort of hunting and killing of the passengers.

Directors: Irving Pichel, Ernest B. Schoedsack | Stars: Joel McCrea, Fay Wray, Leslie Banks, Robert Armstrong

Votes: 7,957

7/10

14. Frankenstein (1931)

Not Rated | 70 min | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

7.9
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An obsessed scientist assembles a living being from parts of exhumed corpses.

Director: James Whale | Stars: Colin Clive, Mae Clarke, Boris Karloff, John Boles

Votes: 53,759 | Gross: $12.00M

7/10

15. A Day at the Races (1937)

Passed | 111 min | Comedy, Musical, Sport

7.7
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A veterinarian posing as a doctor, a race-horse owner and his friends struggle to help keep a sanitarium open with the help of a misfit race-horse.

Director: Sam Wood | Stars: Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, Harpo Marx, Allan Jones

Votes: 11,352

7/10

16. Freaks (1932)

Not Rated | 64 min | Drama, Horror

7.9
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A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.

Director: Tod Browning | Stars: Wallace Ford, Leila Hyams, Olga Baclanova, Roscoe Ates

Votes: 35,333

7/10

17. The Hound of the Baskervilles (1939)

Approved | 80 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

7.6
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Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson investigate the legend of a supernatural hound, a beast that may be stalking a young heir on the fog-shrouded moorland that makes up his estate.

Director: Sidney Lanfield | Stars: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Richard Greene, Wendy Barrie

Votes: 7,874

7/10

18. The Wizard of Oz (1939)

PG | 102 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy

8.1
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100 Metascore

Dorothy Gale is swept away from a farm in Kansas to a magical land of Oz in a tornado and embarks on a quest with her new friends to see the Wizard who can help her return home in Kansas and help her friends as well.

Directors: Victor Fleming, George Cukor, Mervyn LeRoy, Norman Taurog, King Vidor | Stars: Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr

Votes: 320,823 | Gross: $22.20M

7/10

19. The 39 Steps (1935)

Not Rated | 86 min | Mystery, Thriller

7.8
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A man in London tries to help a counterespionage agent. But when the agent is killed and the man stands accused, he must go on the run to both save himself and also stop a spy ring which is trying to steal top secret information.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Lucie Mannheim, Godfrey Tearle

Votes: 43,370

7/10

20. The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)

PG | 102 min | Action, Adventure, Romance

8.0
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97 Metascore

When Prince John and the Norman Lords begin oppressing the Saxon masses in King Richard's absence, a Saxon lord fights back as the outlaw leader of a rebel guerrilla army.

Directors: Michael Curtiz, William Keighley | Stars: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Basil Rathbone, Claude Rains

Votes: 41,240 | Gross: $3.98M

6.5/10

21. Night Key (1937)

Approved | 68 min | Crime, Thriller

6.3
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The inventor of a new top-of-the-line burglar alarm system is kidnapped by a gang in order to get him to help them commit robberies.

Director: Lloyd Corrigan | Stars: Boris Karloff, Warren Hull, Jean Rogers, Alan Baxter

Votes: 542

6.5/10

22. The Black Cat (1934)

65 min | Adventure, Crime, Horror

7.1
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American honeymooners in Hungary become trapped in the home of a Satan-worshiping priest when the bride is taken there for medical help following a road accident.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer | Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, David Manners, Julie Bishop

Votes: 7,268 | Gross: $0.24M

6.5/10

23. L'Age d'Or (1930)

63 min | Comedy, Drama

7.5
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A surrealist tale of a man and a woman passionately in love with one another, but their attempts to consummate that passion are constantly thwarted by their families, the Church, and bourgeois society.

Director: Luis Buñuel | Stars: Gaston Modot, Lya Lys, Caridad de Laberdesque, Max Ernst

Votes: 10,414 | Gross: $0.03M

6.5/10

24. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)

G | 83 min | Animation, Family, Fantasy

7.6
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Exiled into the dangerous forest by her wicked stepmother, a princess is rescued by seven dwarf miners who make her part of their household.

Directors: William Cottrell, David Hand, Wilfred Jackson, Larry Morey, Perce Pearce, Ben Sharpsteen | Stars: Adriana Caselotti, Harry Stockwell, Lucille La Verne, Roy Atwell

Votes: 149,078 | Gross: $184.93M

6.5/10

25. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1939)

Approved | 85 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

7.6
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The master sleuth hunts his archenemy, Professor Moriarty, who is planning the crime of the century.

Director: Alfred L. Werker | Stars: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Ida Lupino, Alan Marshal

Votes: 5,224

6.5/10

26. Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936)

Approved | 115 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

8.0
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Longfellow Deeds, a simple-hearted Vermont tuba player, inherits a fortune and has to contend with opportunist city slickers.

Director: Frank Capra | Stars: Gary Cooper, Jean Arthur, George Bancroft, Lionel Stander

Votes: 16,357

6.5/10

27. The Old Dark House (1932)

TV-G | 72 min | Comedy, Horror

7.3
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Seeking shelter from a storm, five travelers are in for a bizarre and terrifying night when they stumble upon the Femm family estate.

Director: James Whale | Stars: Boris Karloff, Melvyn Douglas, Charles Laughton, Gloria Stuart

Votes: 6,258 | Gross: $0.03M

6/10

28. The Invisible Man (1933)

Not Rated | 71 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

7.7
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A scientist finds a way of becoming invisible, but in doing so, he becomes murderously insane.

Director: James Whale | Stars: Claude Rains, Gloria Stuart, William Harrigan, Henry Travers

Votes: 23,592

6/10

29. Werewolf of London (1935)

Not Rated | 75 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror

6.5
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The juice of a rare Tibetan flower is the only thing that keeps Dr. Glendon from turning into a werewolf during a full moon.

Director: Stuart Walker | Stars: Henry Hull, Warner Oland, Valerie Hobson, Lester Matthews

Votes: 3,850

6/10

30. The Raven (1935)

Approved | 61 min | Crime, Horror

7.1
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A brilliant surgeon obsessed with Edgar Allan Poe saves the life of a beautiful dancer and goes mad when he can't have her.

Director: Lew Landers | Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lester Matthews, Irene Ware

Votes: 3,584

6/10

31. The Invisible Ray (1936)

Approved | 80 min | Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller

6.7
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A scientist becomes murderous after discovering, and being exposed to the radiation of, a powerful new element called Radium X.

Director: Lambert Hillyer | Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Frances Drake, Frank Lawton

Votes: 1,708

6/10

32. Drácula (1931)

Unrated | 104 min | Fantasy, Horror

7.2
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Centuries-old vampire Dracula preys upon the innocent Eva and her friends.

Directors: George Melford, Enrique Tovar Ávalos | Stars: Carlos Villarías, Lupita Tovar, Barry Norton, Pablo Álvarez Rubio

Votes: 3,379

6/10

33. Way Out West (1937)

Approved | 64 min | Comedy, Family, Western

7.7
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Stan and Ollie are charged with delivering the deed to a valuable gold mine to the daughter of a dead prospector. However they reckon without the machinations of her evil guardian Mickey ... See full summary »

Director: James W. Horne | Stars: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Sharon Lynn, James Finlayson

Votes: 6,227

6/10

34. Dracula (1931)

Not Rated | 75 min | Fantasy, Horror

7.6
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The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina.

Director: Tod Browning | Stars: Bela Lugosi, Helen Chandler, David Manners, Dwight Frye

Votes: 37,325

6/10

35. Dracula's Daughter (1936)

Approved | 71 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror

6.4
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Hungarian countess Marya Zaleska seeks the aid of a noted psychiatrist, hoping to free herself of a mysterious evil influence.

Director: Lambert Hillyer | Stars: Otto Kruger, Gloria Holden, Marguerite Churchill, Edward Van Sloan

Votes: 4,412

6/10

36. The Flying Deuces (1939)

Approved | 69 min | Comedy, War

6.9
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Oliver is heartbroken when he finds that Georgette, the inkeeper's daughter he's fallen in love with, is already married to dashing Foreign Legion officer Francois. To forget her, he joins ... See full summary »

Director: A. Edward Sutherland | Stars: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Jean Parker, Reginald Gardiner

Votes: 3,769

5.5/10

37. Murders in the Rue Morgue (1932)

Unrated | 61 min | Crime, Horror, Mystery

6.4
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A mad scientist seeks to mingle human blood with that of an ape, and resorts to kidnapping women for his experiments.

Director: Robert Florey | Stars: Bela Lugosi, Sidney Fox, Leon Ames, Bert Roach

Votes: 2,899

5.5/10

38. Gulliver's Travels (1939)

Passed | 76 min | Animation, Adventure, Family

6.8
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Gulliver washes ashore on Lilliput and attempts to prevent war between that tiny kingdom and its equally minuscule rival, Blefuscu, as well as smooth the way for the romance between the ... See full summary »

Director: Dave Fleischer | Stars: Jessica Dragonette, Lanny Ross, Pinto Colvig, Cal Howard

Votes: 3,053

5/10

39. The Mummy (1932)

TV-PG | 73 min | Fantasy, Horror

7.2
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A living mummy stalks the beautiful woman he believes is the reincarnation of his lover.

Director: Karl Freund | Stars: Boris Karloff, Zita Johann, David Manners, Arthur Byron

Votes: 18,554

5/10

40. Tower of London (1939)

Approved | 92 min | Drama, History

6.8
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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 »

Director: Rowland V. Lee | Stars: Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff, Barbara O'Neil, Ian Hunter

Votes: 1,455

5/10

41. Babes in Toyland (1934)

Passed | 77 min | Comedy, Family, Fantasy

7.4
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Opposing the evil Barnaby, Ollie Dee and Stanley Dum try and fail to pay-off Mother Peep's mortgage and mislead his attempts to marry Little Bo. Enraged, Barnaby's boogeymen are set on Toyland.

Directors: Gus Meins, Charley Rogers | Stars: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Virginia Karns, Charlotte Henry

Votes: 4,919

4.5/10

42. The Son of Kong (1933)

Passed | 70 min | Adventure, Comedy

5.8
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The men who captured the giant ape King Kong return to Skull Island and find his likewise gigantic but far more friendly son.

Director: Ernest B. Schoedsack | Stars: Robert Armstrong, Helen Mack, Frank Reicher, John Marston

Votes: 3,122 | Gross: $1.34M

3.5/10

43. The Phantom Creeps (1939)

Approved | 265 min | Sci-Fi

4.6
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A military intelligence officer and a pretty reporter try to find a scientist whose inventions can destroy the world.

Directors: Ford Beebe, Saul A. Goodkind | Stars: Bela Lugosi, Robert Kent, Dorothy Arnold, Edwin Stanley

Votes: 676

2.5/10