The Plot Thickens (1936)

Inspector Oscar Piper (James Gleason) has a twisted new case on his hands when John Carter (Richard Tucker) is found dead in his study by his butler, Kendall (Arthur Aylesworth). There are several suspicious people in Carter’s circle. Alice Stevens seems to be the last person to have seen Carter alive; her boyfriend, Robert Wilkins, was seen arguing with Carter by a cop; and there’s … Continue reading The Plot Thickens (1936)

Favorite things about… Top Hat (1935)

Back by popular demand, it’s Favorite Things Friday here on TMP! The first Friday of each month, I’ll share my favorite things about one of my favorite films. For July, we celebrate a joyful musical-comedy full of miscommunication… The favorite film: Top Hat, a 1935 musical directed by Mark Sandrich The synopsis: An American dancer meets a dressmaker’s model in a hotel and falls in … Continue reading Favorite things about… Top Hat (1935)

Crime School (1938)

When a gang of street kids appears in his court, unwilling to tell on one another after injuring a man, Judge Clinton (Charles Trowbridge) decides to send the whole bunch to reform school. The school’s warden (Cy Kendall) rules through violence and fear — and it doesn’t take long for new resident Frankie (Billy Halop) to find himself on the warden’s bad side. When the … Continue reading Crime School (1938)

Dead End (1937)

On New York’s East River sits the convergence of the “haves” and “have nots.” Luxury apartments with picturesque river views stretch several stories high, while just outside of that view sit the tenements. Drina (Sylvia Sidney) is a tenement-dwelling woman, raising her younger brother Tommy (Billy Halop) and hoping she’ll someday get them out of the tenement. She works hard to provide for Tommy and … Continue reading Dead End (1937)

Tell No Tales (1939)

Michael Cassidy (Melvyn Douglas) is celebrating the 75th anniversary of his newspaper when he gets horrifying news from the paper’s owner, Matt Cooper: the paper is to stop publication immediately. When anger brews over the suddenness of the announcement and combines with Michael’s pride for the paper, he hatches a plan to solve a kidnapping case, get the scoop, and prove that the paper’s good … Continue reading Tell No Tales (1939)

Frisco Jenny (1932)

When her father and her boyfriend are killed in the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, pregnant and unwed Jenny Sandoval (Ruth Chatterton) must find a way to survive. She takes up residence in the Chinese district and is able to make ends meet, but not necessarily through legal methods. Mixed up with gamblers and running a brothel, Jenny finds herself in a world of trouble when … Continue reading Frisco Jenny (1932)

Star of Midnight (1935)

“Hey, this is swell. Home murder mysteries! Why go out for thrills when you can have them in your own parlor?” Tim Winthrop (Leslie Fenton) has asked his criminal lawyer pal Clay Dalzell (William Powell) for help tracking down a missing girlfriend. Clay’s sort-of fiancée, Donna Mantin (Ginger Rogers) is intrigued by the case. That night, the three head to the theater, where the mysterious … Continue reading Star of Midnight (1935)

Murder on Diamond Row (1937)

Things aren’t going too well for the jewel thieves of London. They’re managing to steal plenty of diamonds, but a ghoul only known as “the Squeaker” is forcing them to sell their spoils to him at a fraction of their value. Even though it may land him in trouble with Scotland Yard (from whom the Squeaker promises protection), Larry Graeme (Robert Newton) refuses to comply … Continue reading Murder on Diamond Row (1937)

Now and Forever (1934)

Jerry Day (Gary Cooper) and Toni Carstairs (Carole Lombard) are globe-trotting thieves, traveling the world together and falling in love. The two are just leaving Shanghai when Jerry gets word from his hometown and there’s trouble regarding his daughter, Penny (Shirley Temple). Jerry’s wife passed away, and he left Penny with her family. Now they want permanent custody. Jerry considers taking the money offered by … Continue reading Now and Forever (1934)