List of films in the public domain in the United States (New 2012)by SelfCloak | created - 21 Dec 2012 | updated - 21 Dec 2012 | Public
This is a list of films that certain cited sources believe are in the public domain in the United States. Being in the public domain refers to cinematic, dramatic, literary, musical and artistic works that no government, organization, or individual owns, and as such is common property. Note: Films in this list may incorporate elements from other works that are still under copyright, even though the film itself is out of copyright. (List made in 2012)
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1. Angel and the Badman (1947)
Approved | 100 min | Romance, Western
Quirt Evans, an all round bad guy, is nursed back to health and sought after by Penelope Worth, a Quaker girl. He eventually finds himself having to choose between his world and the world Penelope lives in.
2. The Animal Kingdom (1932)
Approved | 85 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Tom Collier has had a great relationship with Daisy, but when he decides to marry, it is not Daisy whom he asks, it is Cecelia. After the marriage, Tom is bored with the social scene and ... See full summary »
4. Beau Brummel (1924)
135 min | Drama, History, Romance
George Bryan Brummel, a British military officer, loves Lady Margery, the betrothed of Lord Alvanley. Despite her own desperate love for Brummel, she submits to family pressure and marries ... See full summary »
Votes: 346 | Gross: $0.29M
6. Behind Office Doors (1931)
Passed | 82 min | Drama, Romance
Mary Linden is the secretary who is the unheralded power behind successful executive James Duneen. He takes her for granted until rival Wales tries to take her away from him.
9. Charade (1963)
Not Rated | 113 min | Comedy, Mystery, Romance
Romance and suspense ensue in Paris as a woman is pursued by several men who want a fortune her murdered husband had stolen. Whom can she trust?
Votes: 55,998 | Gross: $13.47M
10. Check and Double Check (1930)
Passed | 77 min | Comedy
Typical Amos 'n Andy storyline has the boys trying to make a go of their "open-air" taxi business while they get caught up in a society hassle, involving driving musicians to a fancy party.... See full summary »
11. Conspiracy (1930)
Passed | 69 min | Mystery
For the last four years Margaret Holt has been helping her brother, assistant D.A. Victor Holt, to try to bring down the dope dealing Schemer Marko gang. Margaret kills Marko (aka 'James ... See full summary »
12. The Dance of Life (1929)
115 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
A vaudeville comic and a pretty young dancer aren't having much luck in their separate careers, so they decide to combine their acts. In order to save money on the road, they get married. ... See full summary »
15. The Driller Killer (1979)
Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Horror, Thriller
An artist slowly goes insane while struggling to pay his bills, work on his paintings, and care for his two female roommates, which leads him taking to the streets of New York after dark and randomly killing derelicts with a power drill.
16. Father's Little Dividend (1951)
Not Rated | 82 min | Comedy, Romance
In this sequel to Father of the Bride (1950), newly married Kay Dunstan announces that she and her husband are going to have a baby, leaving her father having to come to grips with the fact that he will soon be a granddad.
18. The General (1926)
Not Rated | 67 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy
When Union spies steal an engineer's beloved locomotive, he pursues it single-handedly and straight through enemy lines.
22. Hemp for Victory (1943)
15 min | Documentary, Short
An informational film produced to encourage farmers to grow hemp for the war effort during WW2. The film details the many industrial uses of hemp, including cloth and cordage, as well as a detailed history of the plant's use.
24. Hook Line and Sinker (1930)
Passed | 75 min | Comedy, Romance
Two fast-talking insurance salesmen meet Mary, who is running away from her wealthy mother, and they agree to help her run a hotel that she owns. When they find out that the hotel is run ... See full summary »
25. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (I) (1923)
Unrated | 133 min | Drama, Horror, Romance
In fifteenth century Paris, the brother of the archdeacon plots with the gypsy king to foment a peasant revolt. Meanwhile, a freakish hunchback falls in love with the gypsy queen.
Votes: 3,990 | Gross: $1.02M
27. It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
PG | 130 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy
An angel is sent from Heaven to help a desperately frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed.
Votes: 327,366 | Gross: $7.27M
30. A Lady to Love (1930)
92 min | Drama, Romance
Middle-aged Napa Valley grape-grower Tony posts a marriage proposal to San Francisco waitress Lena enclosing a photo of his handsome younger brother Buck. When she gets there she overlooks ... See full summary »
31. The Last Time I Saw Paris (1954)
Approved | 116 min | Drama, Romance
Charles returns to Paris to reminisce about the life he led in Paris after it was liberated. He worked on "Stars and Stripes" when he met Marion and Helen. He would marry and be happy ... See full summary »
32. Lawful Larceny (1930)
66 min | Drama
A woman of low morals who runs a gambling operation in her house takes pride in destroying the men she ensnares in her net. One of these men's wives (played by Bebe Daniels) will not let ... See full summary »
33. Leathernecking (1930)
79 min | Comedy, Musical, Romance
Film version of the 1928 Rodgers and Hart Broadway musical "Present Arms" concerning Chick Evans, a Marine private in Honolulu who falls for society girl Delphine Witherspoon, and begins to... See full summary »
34. Letter of Introduction (1938)
Approved | 104 min | Comedy, Drama
An aging actor, about to marry for the fourth time, is surprised when a young woman, who is the daughter he never knew he had, appears with a "letter of introduction". It seems that she is ... See full summary »
35. The Little Princess (1939)
Approved | 93 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
A little girl is left by her father in an exclusive seminary for girls, due to her father having to go to South Africa to fight in the Second Boer War.
36. The Little Shop of Horrors (1960)
Not Rated | 72 min | Comedy, Horror
A clumsy young man nurtures a plant and discovers that it's carnivorous, forcing him to kill to feed it.
Votes: 13,792 | Gross: $1.40M
37. 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.
38. Love Affair (1939)
Approved | 88 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A French playboy and an American former nightclub singer fall in love aboard a ship. They arrange to reunite six months later, after he has had a chance to earn a decent living.
39. Babes in Toyland (1934)
Passed | 77 min | Comedy, Family, Fantasy
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.
March of the Wooden Soldiers (1950) in the public domain. Babes in Toyland (1934) still in copyright.
40. McLintock! (1963)
Approved | 127 min | Comedy, Romance, Western
Wealthy rancher G.W. McLintock uses his power and influence in the territory to keep the peace between farmers, ranchers, land-grabbers, Indians and corrupt government officials.
41. Meet John Doe (1941)
Not Rated | 122 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A man needing money agrees to impersonate a nonexistent person who said he'd be committing suicide as a protest, and a political movement begins.
43. Mr. Imperium (1951)
Not Rated | 87 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
A beautiful singer/dancer turned actress and playboy crown prince turned monarch have their clandestine romance interfered with by their changing circumstances.
44. My Favorite Brunette (1947)
Approved | 87 min | Comedy, Crime, Mystery
Shortly before his execution on the death row in San Quentin, amateur sleuth and baby photographer Ronnie Jackson, tells reporters how he got there.
45. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Not Rated | 96 min | Horror
There is panic throughout the nation as the dead suddenly come back to life. The film follows a group of characters who barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these bloodthirsty, flesh-eating monsters.
Votes: 98,663 | Gross: $0.09M
46. Nothing Sacred (1937)
Approved | 77 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
An eccentric woman learns she is not dying of radium poisoning as earlier assumed, but when she meets a reporter looking for a story, she feigns sickness again for her own profit.
48. The Outlaw (1943)
Approved | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Western legends Pat Garrett, Doc Holliday and Billy the Kid are played against each other over the law and the attentions of vivacious country vixen Rio McDonald.
50. The Pay-Off (1930)
65 min | Crime, Drama
A thug robs a young engaged couple of their last few dollars. When the thug's gang boss hears of the robbery, he gives them back their money and takes them under his wing. The thug, ... See full summary »
51. The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Not Rated | 93 min | Horror