Pre-Code Movies

by Forlorn_Rage | created - 29 Apr 2013 | updated - 22 Sep 2014 | Public
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1. Red Dust (1932)

Passed | 83 min | Drama, Romance

The owner of a rubber plantation becomes involved with the new wife of one of his employees.

Director: Victor Fleming | Stars: Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Gene Raymond, Mary Astor

Votes: 3,168

2. Red-Headed Woman (1932)

Approved | 79 min | Comedy, Romance

Lillian relentlessly attempts to seduce a married man.

Director: Jack Conway | Stars: Jean Harlow, Chester Morris, Lewis Stone, Leila Hyams

Votes: 2,193

3. Baby Face (1933)

Approved | 71 min | Drama, Romance

A young woman, sexually exploited all her life, decides to turn the tables and exploit the hapless men at a big city bank - by gleefully sleeping her way to the top.

Director: Alfred E. Green | Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, George Brent, Donald Cook, Alphonse Ethier

Votes: 4,903

4. Gold Diggers of 1933 (1933)

Unrated | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

A wealthy composer rescues unemployed Broadway performers with a new play.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Warren William, Joan Blondell, Aline MacMahon, Ruby Keeler

Votes: 6,052

5. Gabriel Over the White House (1933)

Passed | 86 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance

A political hack becomes President during the height of the Depression and undergoes a metamorphosis into an incorruptible statesman after a near-fatal accident.

Director: Gregory La Cava | Stars: Walter Huston, Karen Morley, Franchot Tone, Arthur Byron

Votes: 969

6. Three on a Match (1932)

Unrated | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Although Vivian Revere is seemingly the most successful of a trio of reunited schoolmates, she throws it away by descending into a life of debauchery and drugs.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Joan Blondell, Warren William, Ann Dvorak, Bette Davis

Votes: 2,566

7. Employees' Entrance (1933)

TV-PG | 75 min | Drama, Romance

A working girl is menaced by her tyrannical employer.

Director: Roy Del Ruth | Stars: Warren William, Loretta Young, Wallace Ford, Alice White

Votes: 862

8. The Mouthpiece (1932)

Unrated | 86 min | Drama

Prosecutor becomes a defense attorney after an innocent man is sent to an electric chair.

Directors: James Flood, Elliott Nugent | Stars: Warren William, Sidney Fox, Aline MacMahon, John Wray

Votes: 340

9. Upper World (1934)

Approved | 73 min | Drama

A rich railroad tycoon, bored with his marriage (his wife has no time for him -- she's too busy giving parties and sailing on yachts) starts seeing a showgirl. This are going OK until the ... See full summary »

Director: Roy Del Ruth | Stars: Warren William, Mary Astor, Ginger Rogers, Andy Devine

Votes: 397

10. Smarty (1934)

TV-G | 65 min | Comedy

Vicki Wallace (Joan Blondell) takes great pleasure in teasing her husband,Tony Wallace (Warren William), who takes no pleasure at all in being teased and it isn't long before he ups and ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Florey | Stars: Joan Blondell, Warren William, Edward Everett Horton, Frank McHugh

Votes: 239

11. Born to Be Bad (1934)

Approved | 62 min | Drama, Romance

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 »

Directors: Lowell Sherman, Jack Conway | Stars: Loretta Young, Cary Grant, Jackie Kelk, Marion Burns

Votes: 883

12. Night Nurse (1931)

Not Rated | 72 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

A nurse enlists the help of a petty criminal to foil a sinister plot to murder two children.

Director: William A. Wellman | Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Ben Lyon, Joan Blondell, Clark Gable

Votes: 2,608

13. I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932)

Not Rated | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Wrongly convicted James Allen serves in the intolerable conditions of a southern chain gang, which later comes back to haunt him.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Paul Muni, Glenda Farrell, Helen Vinson, Noel Francis

Votes: 9,926

14. The Story of Temple Drake (1933)

70 min | Drama

A wealthy but neurotic Southern belle finds herself trapped in the hideout of a gang of vicious bootleggers. The gang's leader lusts after her, and is determined not to let anything stand in the way of his having her.

Director: Stephen Roberts | Stars: Miriam Hopkins, William Gargan, Jack La Rue, Florence Eldridge

Votes: 791

15. Grand Hotel (I) (1932)

Not Rated | 112 min | Drama, Romance

A group of very different individuals staying at a luxurious hotel in Berlin deal with each of their respective dramas.

Director: Edmund Goulding | Stars: Greta Garbo, John Barrymore, Joan Crawford, Wallace Beery

Votes: 14,657 | Gross: $1.24M

16. Flesh and the Devil (1926)

Passed | 112 min | Drama, Romance

Childhood friends are torn apart when one of them marries the woman the other once fiercely loved.

Director: Clarence Brown | Stars: John Gilbert, Greta Garbo, Lars Hanson, Barbara Kent

Votes: 3,509 | Gross: $0.60M

17. Susan Lenox (1931)

Approved | 76 min | Drama, Romance

Fleeing her cruel uncle and an arranged marriage Susan Lenox falls in love with a kind stranger but circumstances force her to become a woman of easy virtue.

Director: Robert Z. Leonard | Stars: Greta Garbo, Clark Gable, Jean Hersholt, John Miljan

Votes: 881 | Gross: $0.81M

18. Blonde Venus (1932)

Passed | 93 min | Drama

A cabaret singer takes up with a millionaire to pay for her gravely ill husband's operation.

Director: Josef von Sternberg | Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Cary Grant, Herbert Marshall, Dickie Moore

Votes: 3,424

19. The Blue Angel (1930)

Not Rated | 106 min | Drama, Music

88 Metascore

An elderly professor's ordered life spins dangerously out of control when he falls for a nightclub singer.

Director: Josef von Sternberg | Stars: Emil Jannings, Marlene Dietrich, Kurt Gerron, Rosa Valetti

Votes: 11,608 | Gross: $0.08M

20. Dishonored (1931)

Passed | 91 min | Drama, Romance, War

The Austrian Secret Service sends its most seductive agent to spy on the Russians.

Director: Josef von Sternberg | Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Victor McLaglen, Gustav von Seyffertitz, Warner Oland

Votes: 1,434

21. The Age of Consent (1932)

Passed | 63 min | Drama, Romance

College co-eds learn to handle the responsibilities of romance.

Director: Gregory La Cava | Stars: Dorothy Wilson, Arline Judge, Richard Cromwell, Eric Linden

Votes: 225

22. Bed of Roses (1933)

Passed | 67 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Lorry and Minnie are ex-hookers who leave prison, determined to find the good life with rich men. Along the way Lorry meets and falls in love with cotton barge owner Dan. She must choose ... See full summary »

Director: Gregory La Cava | Stars: Constance Bennett, Joel McCrea, John Halliday, Pert Kelton

Votes: 579

23. Heat Lightning (1934)

Passed | 63 min | Crime, Drama

In the Mohave Desert, Olga runs a gas station, lunch counter, and auto camp with her younger sister Myra. In a 24-hour period, Olga must deal with Myra's desire to go to a town dance with a... See full summary »

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Aline MacMahon, Ann Dvorak, Preston Foster, Lyle Talbot

Votes: 410

24. Lonely Wives (1931)

85 min | Comedy

A lonely husband, whose wife has been away, hires a look-a-like impersonator to fill his place and fool his mother-in-law while he plays around with a pretty coquette. His wife returns that night and confusion prevails.

Director: Russell Mack | Stars: Edward Everett Horton, Esther Ralston, Laura La Plante, Patsy Ruth Miller

Votes: 260

25. The Mayor of Hell (1933)

TV-PG | 90 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Five members of a teen-age gang, including leader Jimmy Smith, are sent to the State Reformatory, presided over by the melodramatically callous Thompson. Soon, Patsy Gargan, a former ... See full summary »

Directors: Archie Mayo, Michael Curtiz | Stars: James Cagney, Madge Evans, Arthur Byron, Allen Jenkins

Votes: 1,140

26. The Public Enemy (1931)

Not Rated | 83 min | Crime, Drama

A young hoodlum rises up through the ranks of the Chicago underworld, even as a gangster's accidental death threatens to spark a bloody mob war.

Director: William A. Wellman | Stars: James Cagney, Jean Harlow, Edward Woods, Joan Blondell

Votes: 15,039

27. Arsène Lupin (1932)

84 min | Crime, Mystery, Romance

A detective is tasked to capture an elusive thief called Arsene Lupin.

Director: Jack Conway | Stars: John Barrymore, Lionel Barrymore, Karen Morley, John Miljan

Votes: 673

28. Possessed (1931)

Passed | 76 min | Drama, Romance

An ambitious factory girl meets a handsome, wealthy lawyer, but he's interested in her as a mistress, not a wife.

Director: Clarence Brown | Stars: Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Wallace Ford, Richard 'Skeets' Gallagher

Votes: 1,352

29. Scarface (1932)

PG | 93 min | Action, Crime, Drama

An ambitious and nearly insane violent gangster climbs the ladder of success in the mob, but his weaknesses prove to be his downfall.

Directors: Howard Hawks, Richard Rosson | Stars: Paul Muni, Ann Dvorak, Karen Morley, Osgood Perkins

Votes: 21,723

30. Ecstasy (1933)

TV-MA | 82 min | Drama, Romance

Eva has just gotten married to an older gentleman, but discovers that he is obsessed with order in his life and doesn't have much room for passion. She becomes despondent and leaves him, ... See full summary »

Director: Gustav Machatý | Stars: Hedy Lamarr, Aribert Mog, Zvonimir Rogoz, Leopold Kramer

Votes: 1,634

31. Street Scene (1931)

80 min | Drama, Romance

Twenty-four hours elapse on the stoop of a Hell's Kitchen tenement as a microcosm of the American melting pot interacts with each other during a summer heatwave.

Director: King Vidor | Stars: Sylvia Sidney, William Collier Jr., Estelle Taylor, Beulah Bondi

Votes: 1,121

32. Madame Butterfly (1932)

86 min | Drama

Lieutenant Pinkerton marries geisha-in-training but soon after abandons her and goes back to the US.

Director: Marion Gering | Stars: Sylvia Sidney, Cary Grant, Charles Ruggles, Irving Pichel

Votes: 217

33. Blonde Crazy (1931)

TV-G | 79 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

The adventures of an egoistic con man and his glamorous accomplice.

Director: Roy Del Ruth | Stars: James Cagney, Joan Blondell, Louis Calhern, Noel Francis

Votes: 1,160

34. I'm No Angel (1933)

Passed | 87 min | Comedy, Musical, Romance

Circus performer Tira seeks a better life pursuing the company of wealthy New York men with improbable comic complications along the way.

Director: Wesley Ruggles | Stars: Mae West, Cary Grant, Gregory Ratoff, Edward Arnold

Votes: 2,491 | Gross: $2.85M

35. Hot Saturday (1932)

73 min | Drama, Romance

A pretty but virtuous small-town bank clerk is the victim of a vicious rumor from an unsuccessful suitor that she spent the night with a notorious womanizer.

Director: William A. Seiter | Stars: Cary Grant, Nancy Carroll, Randolph Scott, Edward Woods

Votes: 797

36. The Little Giant (1933)

Approved | 76 min | Comedy, Crime, Romance

When Prohibition ends, a beer baron sees the writing on the wall, quits the rackets, and tries to break into California society.

Director: Roy Del Ruth | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Mary Astor, Helen Vinson, Russell Hopton

Votes: 823

37. Safe in Hell (1931)

Passed | 73 min | Crime, Drama

After accidentally killing the man who raped her and forced her into prostitution, a New Orleans woman flees to a Caribbean island. While she awaits her fiancé, the vicious local police chief sets his sights on her.

Director: William A. Wellman | Stars: Dorothy Mackaill, Donald Cook, Ralf Harolde, John Wray

Votes: 849

38. Taxi! (1932)

TV-G | 69 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Independent cab drivers struggling against a taxi company consortium find a leader in Matt Nolan.

Director: Roy Del Ruth | Stars: James Cagney, Loretta Young, George E. Stone, Guy Kibbee

Votes: 961

39. Goodbye Again (1933)

Unrated | 66 min | Comedy, Romance

Flirtatious mix-ups abound when a celebrated novelist tangles with an old flame and her irate husband. Will his savvy secretary save his neck if she is secretly in love with him also?

Director: Michael Curtiz | Stars: Warren William, Joan Blondell, Genevieve Tobin, Hugh Herbert

Votes: 310

40. Double Harness (1933)

Passed | 69 min | Comedy, Drama

A woman tricks a playboy into marrying her and then tries to make him legitimately fall in love with her.

Director: John Cromwell | Stars: Ann Harding, William Powell, Lucile Browne, Henry Stephenson

Votes: 895

41. When Ladies Meet (1933)

Passed | 85 min | Comedy, Romance

Mary, a writer working on a novel about a love triangle, is attracted to her publisher. Her suitor Jimmy is determined to break them up; he introduces Mary to the publisher's wife without ... See full summary »

Directors: Harry Beaumont, Robert Z. Leonard | Stars: Ann Harding, Robert Montgomery, Myrna Loy, Alice Brady

Votes: 683

42. For the Defense (1930)

65 min | Drama

William Powell plays William Foster, a slick attorney who stays within the law, but specializes in representing crooks and shady characters. He's adept at keeping them out of jail, winning ... See full summary »

Director: John Cromwell | Stars: William Powell, Kay Francis, Scott Kolk, William B. Davidson

Votes: 285

43. Union Depot (1932)

Unrated | 67 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Travelers of different and varied backgrounds meet and interact on one night in a metropolitan train station and its environs.

Director: Alfred E. Green | Stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Joan Blondell, Guy Kibbee, Alan Hale

Votes: 631

44. Mary Stevens, M.D. (1933)

Passed | 72 min | Drama

Mary Stevens (Kay Francis) and her old friend Don Andrews (Lyle Talbot) find themselves graduating from medical school at the same time. They decide to set up their respective medical ... See full summary »

Director: Lloyd Bacon | Stars: Kay Francis, Lyle Talbot, Glenda Farrell, Thelma Todd

Votes: 289

45. Bombshell (1933)

Passed | 96 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Sexpot film star Lola Burns seeks a new image and tries marrying a marquis and adopting a baby - all sorts of schemes which go awry.

Director: Victor Fleming | Stars: Jean Harlow, Lee Tracy, Frank Morgan, Franchot Tone

Votes: 1,886

46. Design for Living (1933)

Not Rated | 91 min | Comedy, Romance

A woman cannot decide between two men who love her, and the trio agree to try living together in a platonic friendly relationship.

Director: Ernst Lubitsch | Stars: Fredric March, Gary Cooper, Miriam Hopkins, Edward Everett Horton

Votes: 4,554

47. Five Star Final (1931)

Not Rated | 89 min | Crime, Drama

The City Editor of a sleazy tabloid goes against his own journalistic ethics to resurrect a twenty year old murder case... with tragic results.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Marian Marsh, H.B. Warner, Anthony Bushell

Votes: 1,371

48. Thirty Day Princess (1934)

74 min | Comedy, Romance

A European princess arrives in New York City to secure a much-needed loan for her country. She contracts the mumps, and an actress who looks exactly like her is hired to impersonate her.

Director: Marion Gering | Stars: Sylvia Sidney, Cary Grant, Edward Arnold, Henry Stephenson

Votes: 554

49. One Sunday Afternoon (1933)

Passed | 85 min | Comedy, Romance

Middle-aged dentist Biff Grimes reminisces about his unrequited love for beautiful Virginia Brush and her husband Hugo, his ex-friend, who betrayed him.

Director: Stephen Roberts | Stars: Gary Cooper, Fay Wray, Frances Fuller, Roscoe Karns

Votes: 458