The saga of Tom Holmes - a man of principles - from the Great War to the Great Depression. Will he ever get a break? His war heroics earn fame and a medal for someone else, and his wounds ... See full summary »
William A. Wellman
German film in which a sensitive girl is sent to an all-girls boarding school and develops a romantic attachment to one of her teachers. One of the earliest narrative films to explicitly ... See full summary »
Vienna in the beginning of the twentieth century. Cavalry Lieutenant Fritz Lobheimer is about to end his affair with Baroness Eggerdorff when he meets the young Christine, the daughter of ... See full summary »
Letty, a young woman who ended up pregnant, unmarried and on the streets at fifteen is bitter and determined that her child will not grow up to be taken advantage of. Letty teaches her ... See full summary »
Sign painters Joe and Lucky travel around New England looking for jobs. After Joe uses Madge as a model, she hides in their wagon. The painters are about to be charged with kidnapping until... See full summary »
Promoter Smoothe King helps a pair of phonies con their way into a movie company. As Wanda heads toward stardom, she turns more and more from King toward the matinée idol. King must decide between his plans and her happiness.
Prizefighter Jimmy Dolan accidentally kills a man at a party and escapes. He hides out at a health farm for invalid children and begins to lose his cynicism under the influence of the ... See full summary »
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
12 million Americans are out of work. Trina is homeless and hungry when Bill takes her under his wing, showing her a squatter's camp where she can live. She's soon in love with him, making a castle for him inside a shack; but he's bluff, gruff, and a "bindlestiff," a guy who can't stay put. When Trina tells Bill she's pregnant, he's ready to jump a freight train and move on, but first he wants to leave Trina with some money, so he partners up with Bragg, the camp's louse (who's been eyeing Trina), to rob a toy store. He's shot and the cops are closing in: does he have any options? Written by
"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on December 1, 1941 with Spencer Tracy reprising his film role. See more »
No female has to starve in a town like this.
Have you ever been out of work for a whole year?
I been outta work all my life. Besides, the unemployment situation's got nothin' to with women. Didja ever think of that?
Yeah, I thought of it.
Oh, I s'pose the river would be better than that.
Yeah, I thought of that, too.
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Young and Spencer star in the finest film of the pre-code era
It's a shame this movie is so hard to get your hands on in the US. I found it through a rare video dealer, and it was certainly worth it. This is, without a doubt, the best film made during the pre-code era, and the finest film of the 1930s. Masterful director Frank Borzage made wonderful films about the Depression, and with MAN'S CASTLE he created a fairy tale amidst the hardships of the era.
Loretta Young and Spencer Tracy have a wonderful chemistry between them, and they help make this movie a wonderful romance. Young's Trina is sweet and hopeful, while Tracy's Bill is gruff and closed-off. The dynamic between the character creates one of the most difficult, but in the end rewarding relationships on film.
MAN'S CASTLE is the most soft-focus pre-code film I've seen. Borzage uses the hazy and dreamy technique to turn the squatter's village where Bill and Trina live into a palace. The hardships of the Depression are never ignored, in fact they're integral to the film. But as Borzage crafts the film as a soft focus fairy tale, the love between the characters makes the situation seem less harsh. It makes the film warm and affectionate.
MAN'S CASTLE is the crowning achievement of the pre-code era. If only more people could see it.
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