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Movies that Defied the Code


Metropolisforever
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In 1934, the evil Hays Code was created, which required all filmmakers to obtain a certificate of approval before they could release their movie. Most films were released with a Code certificate. However, many films were released WITHOUT code approval.

 

This is a discussion thread for movies that defied the Code.

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The Hayes code it was evil because it was blanat for of government suctioned, if not backed censorship. The industry ,studios bowed to it to try to keep everyone happy, however it was give a inch and they took a mile, the more they gave into what they wanted, the more they wanted,, and so it wanted. and to got pretty stupid. well, thats my 2 cents worth...lol

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Sorry ,I couldn't get it close enough for spell-check to catch it I finely googled it until I got it,, The word I was shooting for, I think was " blanent" Now I'm not even sure its still spelled right.. Usually it a matter of I can spell it pretty good just can't get it typed right, this time I couldn't even spell it even close... sorry,,

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Kenneth - I believe the word you're looking for is "blatant". I'm sure most folks will figure it out from the context of your message, even if there are some who are unable to try to do so.

 

So, before this all gets too derailed in semantics, is there anyone out there who can provide good examples of films that circumvented or just plain ignored the code? Examples from the early years (1930s) would be particularly interesting to me.

 

I know of some cases from Richard Barrios' book Screened Out, but all of his examples deal with gay and lesbian issues. I'm sure there are plenty more that weren't covered by this topic, right?

 

The only one I can think of off the top of my head is Clark Gable's utterance of "damn" in "Frankly my dear, I don't give a..."

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Gregory; thanks for clearing up my spelling,,, As for movies that was what the topic was supposed to be movie that were released in spite of Haynes code, disapproval, It would seem that would draw more attention, putting in advertisement that Haynes code had rejected it, would make people want to see it all the more, finding movies released anyway would be interesting..

As for the philosophical debate, lets leave that to another thread, or even message board and just enjoy the movies..

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"The Outlaw" ignored it, but paid the price for it.

 

In principle, I suppose I should be opposed to the Hays Code, but so many wonderful films were made under it that wouldn't have been the same without it, that I can't get too perturbed about it. And it also means that there's a whole era of movies that I can enjoy under the assumption that blatant nudity, violence, and profanity will be curtailed.

 

I think of the wonderful wit of the movie "Kiss Me Kate", and wonder if it would've been so witty if not made under The Code. I love double entendre and risque lines, and they seem to be a lost art now that people can just say anything, without having to couch it in sophisticated wit.

 

Of course, I also love pre-Code films, but most of them were never all that blatant and obvious.

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Some websites call this a "soundie". I was in a place in New York one time, either an old arcade or a bar (I can't remember), and they had an old "soundie" machine. It was a juke box with a rear-screen 16 mm movie projector in it. It had only a few choices, but it showed a movie and played the music as the sound track on the movie.

 

But to answer your question, yes some small independent theaters, especially in big cities, did show non-code films in the '30s and '40s. A few were made. Most were low budget. I think "Child Bride" was a no-code film. It must have been a no-code film because of the nude swimming scene.

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Soundie were made around the beginning of WWII and up to almost the end of the war I believe, I have PBS Special on them, I recored last year I think its in my dvd collection, What they are is essentially what today we call a music video. I had never heard of them until I saw the special, Try doing a google search on them, If I remember right they didn't make them for a very long period of time. After WWII they were phased out and I don't think theres many left around anymore.

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I think they were too costly, the soundie machines were too complicated, the films quickly got dirty and scratched, and a soundie machine had only a limited number of songs on film. Plus, they didn't bring in much money. They were mostly novelties and eventually were phased out.

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*The Fountainhead* has some very obvious sexual imagery and it was made in '48 (released in '49). Overall, I don't like the movie but the couple of scenes that I do like are the ones I'm surprised made it past the censors.

 

When Patricia Neal first sees Gary Cooper she is wearing a very tight sweater that leaves nothing to the imagination and he's working in a quarry with a rather large drill. His sleeves are rolled up and we can see all the muscles in his arms tensed up as he works the drill. The camera pans from the drill going into the marble up along his arms and then up to his face. He sees Patricia ogling him and they exchange some very suggestive looks and kinda racy dialogue.

 

Later on she's looking in the mirror while brushing her hair and then also in the mirror we see her flashing back to watching him working the drill. She seems quite "frustrated" and she huffily turns off her lamps on her vanity and goes to bed. Then she takes the poker from the fireplace and smashes the marble in front of it and gets Gary to come up and fix it. It's obvious that he knows she smashed it on purpose and she gets mad when he doesn't immediately play along with her game.

 

In another scene later he very boldly walks into her bedroom at night and she's sitting at her vanity in her nightgown and sees him in her mirror. She gets up to run out but he blocks the door. They struggle for a minute and then he kisses her very forcefully. She manages to wriggle free and then falls the ground. She gets up and runs away again out onto her balcony where she falls again. He's very calmly walked over to her and is just standing over her smirking then the scene fades out.

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Coopsgal--that is the reason I love the Fountainhead so much--Cooper and Neal burn up the screen-even though I thought her character was slightly dotty- she really fell for Coop--well what red blooded gal wouldn't--he had more sex-appeal -than any other star of that era or since. I saw a magazine called The Inquirer at the flea market that stated he had a major affair with Sweeden's Anita Ekberg~

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