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Ruth Chatterton in Frisco Jenny

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Finally got around to seeing this precode, and just fell in love with Ruth Chatterton. I've also read that this role is too similar to Madame X. Thoughts? 

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Not sure if it is all that much alike, though there are some similarities. Ruth did play in a film version of Madame X in the late 20s, before FRISCO JENNY was made. 

 

If you like this picture, check out JOURNAL OF A CRIME, another good melodrama about a woman in jeopardy.

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Finally got around to seeing this precode, and just fell in love with Ruth Chatterton. I've also read that this role is too similar to Madame X. Thoughts? 

 

Frisco Jenny is a good film.   A little over the top but that is the case with many of Chatterton's films.   But it is very entertaining.

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Not sure if it is all that much alike, though there are some similarities. Ruth did play in a film version of Madame X in the late 20s, before FRISCO JENNY was made. 

 

If you like this picture, check out JOURNAL OF A CRIME, another good melodrama about a woman in jeopardy.

 

Does she star in that? 

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Frisco Jenny is a good film.   A little over the top but that is the case with many of Chatterton's films.   But it is very entertaining.

I thought it was too quick myself, but considering the audiences- I should be amazed they got in all they did in under 90 minutes. 

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Thanks TopBilled. I will look for it. 

TCM airs JOURNAL OF A CRIME occasionally. It's a pre-code gem. Not sure if it is out on DVD yet. 

 

P.S. I just checked and it is not on home video. The only Ruth Chatterton films on DVD are: MADAME X; THE RICH ARE ALWAYS WITH US; FRISCO JENNY; GIRLS' DORMITORY; and THE CRASH. Surprised her most famous role in DODSWORTH is not on DVD.

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TCM airs JOURNAL OF A CRIME occasionally. It's a pre-code gem. Not sure if it is out on DVD yet. 

 

P.S. I just checked and it is not on home video. The only Ruth Chatterton films on DVD are: MADAME X; THE RICH ARE ALWAYS WITH US; FRISCO JENNY; GIRLS' DORMITORY; and THE CRASH. Surprised her most famous role in DODSWORTH is not on DVD.

There's a reason to petition TCM for what to put on DVD next!  :)

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There's a reason to petition TCM for what to put on DVD next!  :)

Exactly. The Warners Archive really should do a wave of Chatterton's films. She was one of the biggest stars in Hollywood in the early 1930s. 

 

It looks like JOURNAL OF A CRIME last aired on TCM in October 2014. It usually turns up every year or two, so keep looking for it on the upcoming schedules.

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Finally got around to seeing this precode, and just fell in love with Ruth Chatterton. I've also read that this role is too similar to Madame X. Thoughts? 

Frisco Jenny is perhaps my favorite pre-code film. It's a kind of an inverted Madame X: In Madame X, the son is the lawyer who gets his mother acquitted; in Frisco Jenny her son is the DA who convicts his mother. It's a rich, moving film, with great performances and one of the great heart-breaking final scenes: Helen Jerome Eddy burning the clippings, shot from the far side of the fireplace. What a scene! Among its many other virtues, the film has great music, from the opening credits to the final scene and closing credits.

 

Frisco Jenny also shows the cause of the San Francisco earthquake: the slap Jenny gets from her father. (played by Robert Emmett O'Connor). Go back and look at it; he slaps her, the building shakes; the earthquake destroys much of San Francisco. All because of that slap.

 

Ruth Chatterton is my favorite pre-code actress. And I like her beyond that period as well.

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Frisco Jenny is perhaps my favorite pre-code film. It's a kind of an inverted Madame X: In Madame X, the son is the lawyer who gets his mother acquitted; in Frisco Jenny her son is the DA who convicts his mother. It's a rich, moving film, with great performances and one of the great heart-breaking final scenes: Helen Jerome Eddy burning the clippings, shot from the far side of the fire place. What a scene! Among its many other virtues, the film has great music, from the opening credits to the final scene and closing credits.

 

Frisco Jenny also shows the cause of the San Francisco earthquake: the slap Jenny gets from her father. (played by Robert Emmett O'Connor). Go back and look at it; he slaps her, the building shakes; the earthquake destroys much of San Francisco. All because of that slap.

 

Ruth Chatterton is my favorite pre-code actress. And I like her beyond that period as well.

 

Yes,  until I saw this movie I didn't know that a slap could cause an earthquake.   Now if it as Mae West that was knocked down I could understand that but Ruth???

 

But yea,  Frisco Jenny is a treat and so is Ruth.   While many of her movies and associated performances push the envelope (as in borderline campy),  their entertainment value is high.

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Frisco Jenny is a treat and so is Ruth.   While many of her movies and associated performances push the envelope (as in borderline campy),  there entertainment value is high.

That's a great way to describe the pleasure of a Ruth Chatterton picture.

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Frisco Jenny is perhaps my favorite pre-code film. It's a kind of an inverted Madame X: In Madame X, the son is the lawyer who gets his mother acquitted; in Frisco Jenny her son is the DA who convicts his mother. It's a rich, moving film, with great performances and one of the great heart-breaking final scenes: Helen Jerome Eddy burning the clippings, shot from the far side of the fireplace. What a scene! Among its many other virtues, the film has great music, from the opening credits to the final scene and closing credits.

 

Frisco Jenny also shows the cause of the San Francisco earthquake: the slap Jenny gets from her father. (played by Robert Emmett O'Connor). Go back and look at it; he slaps her, the building shakes; the earthquake destroys much of San Francisco. All because of that slap.

 

Ruth Chatterton is my favorite pre-code actress. And I like her beyond that period as well.

 

That must have been some slap! Does that mean the tension between Clark Gable and Spencer Tracy hitting a climax point over Jeanette MacDonald is San Francisco (1936)caused the 1906 earthquake as well?

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Frisco Jenny is perhaps my favorite pre-code film. It's a kind of an inverted Madame X: In Madame X, the son is the lawyer who gets his mother acquitted; in Frisco Jenny her son is the DA who convicts his mother. It's a rich, moving film, with great performances and one of the great heart-breaking final scenes: Helen Jerome Eddy burning the clippings, shot from the far side of the fireplace. What a scene! Among its many other virtues, the film has great music, from the opening credits to the final scene and closing credits.

 

 

 

Maybe I am just now noticing this but does Jenny as Helen Jerome Eddy to burn the birth certificate? She has her burn the album, but not that. 

 

Also, its a shame there wasn't a sequel to this, I cannot imagine her son finding out somehow later in life who his birth mother was and dealing with the guilt over sending her to her death. 

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frisco-jenny.jpg

She really was a great actress. I've always been curious about the last films she made in the late 30s in England. I am assuming she left Hollywood to try her luck in the British film industry, because she may have felt she could find better opportunities there like Constance Cummings had-- though I wonder how long she stayed in the U.K. She would switch gears and become a writer after she abandoned acting altogether.

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I too love Frisco Jenny!  I started watching a lot of pre-codes a few years ago on TCM and fell for Ruth Chatterton, Loretta Young, Claudette Colbert and many others.  I had not realized that they were also in Pre-Codes until a few years ago.  Previously, I had seen films they were all in later.  I was in for a treat!  My favorite Bette Davis and Joan Crawford were in several and I discovered Helen Twelvetrees and Sally Eilers as well.

 

 

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I too love Frisco Jenny!  I started watching a lot of pre-codes a few years ago on TCM and fell for Ruth Chatterton, Loretta Young, Claudette Colbert and many others.  I had not realized that they were also in Pre-Codes until a few years ago.  Previously, I had seen films they were all in later.  I was in for a treat!  My favorite Bette Davis and Joan Crawford were in several and I discovered Helen Twelvetrees and Sally Eilers as well.

Pre-Codes are fun to watch. I love them for their freedom. 

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Pre-Codes are fun to watch. I love them for their freedom. 

Do you feel that way about films that were made in the late 60s or early 70s, right as the production code had ended? Is there a similar freedom in those productions? Or is it different?

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Do you feel that way about films that were made in the late 60s or early 70s, right as the production code had ended? Is there a similar freedom in those productions? Or is it different?

I do feel similarly. Of course, after 34 years of creative repression, it was like a baby learning to walk again after helicopter parents finally realize to call it quits on every.single. detail of that baby's movement. 

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I do feel similarly. Of course, after 34 years of creative repression, it was like a baby learning to walk again after helicopter parents finally realize to call it quits on every.single. detail of that baby's movement. 

Well, that's certainly one way to look at it! :)

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