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Pre-Code that Pushed the Envelope

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Which Pre-Code movie pushed the envelope as far as sex is concerned? I wished there are more that are preserved,restored,and released.

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The Scarlet Empress Catherine the Great played as a power-hungry ****...

 

Queen Christina the bisexual queen of Sweden w/ her mistress, Lady Ebba and the "rrround dozen!' lovers and 3 days in bed w/ the Spanish envoy

 

Song of Songs with its lascivious attention to that statue...

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Queen Christina for the sex trans gender insinuations, Mata Hari, the original uncut version that TCM has not been able to get for us, not the watered down after the code version, the original was pre-code but it was butchered when MGM re-released it in 1936, after the Code was being enforced.

 

Baby Face is another

 

Inspiration (it depicts sexual ties with an older man and teenage girl, suicide, prostitution, it has it all!

 

the original Waterloo Bridge

 

Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise)

 

these are bit a few!

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Bed of Roses --two working girls leave prison and seduce and rob their way to "the good life."

 

Safe in Hell -- Dorothy Mackaill is a prostitute who's accused of killing a customer and escapes to the Caribbean, where she encounters the same man and actually kills him this time

 

The Holy Grail of all precodes-- Convention City, which included Guy Kibbee quipping to Joan Blondell: "You take off your dress and I'll take off my toupee!"

There's also Mary Astor gulping gin and a subplot concerning a goat and an amorous auctioneer Adolphe Menjou does his sleezy older man thing and seduces the boss's daughter.

 

The Divorcee, A Free Soul and Strangers May Kiss depicted an unmarried Norma Shearer having lots and lots of sex and feeling no shame or remorse about it at all. In Private Lives, she and ex husband Robt Montgomery meet up while honeymooning with their respective 2nd spouses, realize they are still in love, and take off together.

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International House (1933) - featuring a dance number with Sterling Hollaway and a bunch of near-topless women, and a Cab Calloway song about how much his bassist loves smoking pot. enough said.

 

Search For Beauty (1934) - i haven't seen this Ida Lupino-starred movie yet, but i have seen many promo stills from it and read a few synopsis. Unless the promo stills show stuff that didn't make it into the final cut or was edited out of later rereleases (it happened sometimes), i don't see how this wouldn't rank as one of the raunchiest movies of the era.

 

Chicken a la King (1928) - a presumably lost Fox film from the late silent era starring Nancy Carroll. No idea what the movie was about, but occasionally scene stills from it do turn up on eBay, and they almost always feature VERY scantily clad showgirls.

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Got to see Safe in Hell this morning and was knocked speachless. This was my introduction to Dorothy Mackaill and she was galvanizing in the role. The story seemed more post-code-bad girl can't end up becoming respectable but must pay for her sin-than pre. As for the title, safe she finally was but I believe in a much cooler and more northerly place as she'd already been in Hell here on Earth and deserved better. Even the louse who ran the prison camp and led her to choose death was in tearns when it happens. A disturbing movie and one I won't forget.

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> {quote:title=wouldbestar wrote:}{quote}

> Got to see Safe in Hell this morning and was knocked speachless. This was my introduction to Dorothy Mackaill and she was galvanizing in the role. The story seemed more post-code-bad girl can't end up becoming respectable but must pay for her sin-than pre. As for the title, safe she finally was but I believe in a much cooler and more northerly place as she'd already been in Hell here on Earth and deserved better. Even the louse who ran the prison camp and led her to choose death was in tearns when it happens. A disturbing movie and one I won't forget.

 

Those are good comments. I saw it for the first time today, on dvd, and thought it was very good. Mackaill is someone I'd like to see more of, although her career in talkies was short. It was rather amusing to see perpetual sleazeball Charles Middleton playing her sympathetic lawyer. One of the jury members was Rondo Hatton, known for his horror roles in the 1940s, because of his acromegaly. I had to replay his quick scene a few times to make sure it was him; he must have been in the early stages of the disease because it is not apparent. He looks more like a 1930s football player, with short hair. He looked tough, but definitely not diseased.

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Got to keep on the lookout for those films every month. It would be nice if I had seen Convention City and Safe in Hell.

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Sadly, no print of CONVENTION CITY is known to exist.

 

On the plus side at least you can enjoy SAFE IN HELL on TCM.

 

 

I know--I keep hoping someone will find one in a vault somewhere.

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Racketbuster, some interesting titles there!

I have *Search For Beauty*....really amazing! Even some male butts are briefly seen(I closed my eyes and thankfully it was over! ;) ) Toby Wing does a very sexy dance in her teddy on top of a table, Ida Lupino is a very young blonde(but doesn't show much) and some gals in the locker room are wearing similarly scanty outfits...also on the expensive set is *Murder at the Vanities* which I read somewhere(So it has to be true!) was the last film released before the code was really enforced...and it's about sexy a pre code as is out there. Not just the one scene of nearly nude chorus girls you expect in a pre code, but several looong scenes...amazing. Have to see it to believe it! There are clips out there on the web of the best moments...

 

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Can you imagine going into a theater in 1934 and seeing this appear on the big screen:

 

 

 

Longer version here:

 

Anglo-Saxons on Parade:

 

 

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thanks for the link. the whole movie is on youtube, which i didn't realize. good quality too. i just watched it and enjoyed it very much. and yes, it was as raunchy as i expected. i lost count of how many times i heard the word "sex". Amazing what filmmakers were able to get away with back then!

 

also, i am now officially crushing on Ida Lupino. She was adorable in this, as was Toby Wing.

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Off the top of my head--Norma Shearer in The Divorcee, Garbo in Queen Christina and Flesh and the Devil, the shocking Safe in Hell, John Gilbert's Downstairs.

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please we always forget, because we are not allowed to see it, the original uncensored pre-code and uncut MatA hARI, WITH gARBO IN THE SEE THROUGH NEGLIGEE, IN THE TORRID SCENE WITH NOVARRO, THESE SCENES AND OTHERS, WERE CUT OUIT OF THE FILM WHEN MGM RE-RELEASED IT IN 1936 AFTER THE CODE WAS BEING ENFORCED....TCM, WE LOVE YOU PLEASE TRY TO GET THIS FILM OUT ON YOUR PROGRAMMING, IT WOULD BE A LOT TO A GARBO FAN WHO IS GETTING QUITE ON IN YEARS AND NEVER SAW THE ORIGINAL FILM. BLESS YOU FOR YOUR EFFORTS!

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This NooB is writing all the titles down for late night research. Thanks, all.

New to the site and wandering all the hallways in the forums...

is there a thread listing pre-codes scheduled for each month?

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Not that I recall, but when someone posts a thread in the "General Discussions" forum about a future month's schedule being up, there is usually someone commenting on one or two precode films that may pop up for that month.

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