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The City (I) (1939)

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Made by a group of people with, if not an axe to grind, a purpose in mind, which appears to be a plug for future suburbia and back to the idyllic towns of the past and the Big City would ... See full summary »


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Title: The City (1939)

The City (1939) on IMDb 5.9/10

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Credited cast:
Morris Carnovsky ...
Narrator (voice)


Made by a group of people with, if not an axe to grind, a purpose in mind, which appears to be a plug for future suburbia and back to the idyllic towns of the past and the Big City would just be a place where people work but not live. Or something like that, as it is told in a schizophrenic method that primarily drones on about started like this and it was good, and it becames this and it was bad, yada, yada, yada. Based on how America looks today...large metroplexes surrounded by super highways surrounded by look-alike suburbs with more super highways leading out to other metroplexes--- the goal was accomplished but the results aren't what was envisioned in 1939. The film was made possible by funding from the Carnegie Corporation of New York and has a definite leftward-slant which is no surprise based on some of the names connected with the original film. It was later adapted and edited into an entry of John Nesbitt's Passing Parade at MGM in 1944 (PCA No. 9620) called "The ... Written by Les Adams <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Documentary | Short





Release Date:

26 May 1939 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film was made to be shown at the 1939 New York World's Fair. It was screened at the Little Theatre in the Science and Education Building. See more »


Featured in Lost Forever (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

two thumbs in your eye
10 October 1999 | by (oklahoma) – See all my reviews

this film starts out showing an idyllic old style town, complete with 'town meetings' where everyone gets a chance to speak their mind, kids play in the yards, theres a blacksmith helping out a neighbor, blah blah blah. then it shows the horrible city where everything is dirty and the air and water are poison. this goes on for a bit. shows some very cool shots of an industrial town which being from a rural state i've never seen. anyways all this bombast ends up focusing on something called 'the new city' which is sort of a cross between a suburb and im not sure what. the modern highway is presented as the ultimate solution to the overcrowded industrial city. people go to these 'new cities' where the 'play is not so much different from the work' and people supposedly dont mind going to work. washing machines would free women from boring chores and they could sit around gossiping with their pals. you could walk to work (but i thought everyone would drive on the motor parkway?). nearby farms would supply all produce so it would be fresh. i have no idea what these guys were smoking. this movie proves that you dont have to be on LSD (not invented till the 40s) to be trippin'.

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