Watching 1939: Lying Lips (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film: 
Lying Lips (1939)

Release date: 
July 9, 1939

Cast: 
Edna Mae Harris, Carman Newsome, Robert Earl Jones, Frances E. Williams, Juano Hernandez, Cherokee Thornton, Slim Thompson, Gladys Williams, Don De Leo, George Reynolds, Charles La Torre, Henry ‘Gang’ Gines

Studio: 
Micheaux Film

Director: 
Oscar Micheaux

Plot:
Elsie Bellwood (Harris) is a nightclub singer at the Poodle Dog night club, but the Italian owners, Farina (Leo) and Garotti (Torre) want her to use her talents off stage and attend “private parties” to bring in extra money. Elsie refuses, insisting she’s a good girl, and her agent Benjamin Hadnot (Newsome) stands up for her. After Hadnot has an altercation over Elsie with Farina and Garotti, Elsie returns home to find her aunt dead. Elsie is framed for the murder and Hadnot and Detective Wenzer (Jones) try to uncover the case.

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Watching 1939: Midnight Shadow (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film:  Midnight Shadow (1939)

Release date:  May 1939 (first date referenced in newspapers)

Cast:  Frances Redd, Buck Woods, Richard Bates, Ollie Ann Robinson, Clinton Rosemond, Jesse Lee Brooks, Edward Brandon, John Criner, Pete Webster, Ruby Dandridge, Napolean Simpson

Studio:  George Randol Productions

Director:  George Randol

Plot:
A traveling mind-reading performer, Prince Alihabad (Criner) courts Margaret Wilson (Redd), who lives in the quiet Oklahoma town that he is performing in. Margaret will receive land in Texas that may have oil on it when she marries. Margaret has other suitors who also want to marry her, including Buster (Brandon). When Margaret finds her father dead and the deed to the land missing, police and two amateur detectives (Bates, Woods) investigate the case.

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Watching 1939: Fangs of the Wild (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film: 
Fangs of the Wild (1939)

Release date: 
July 1939

Cast: 
Dennis Moore, Luana Walters, Tom London, Ted Adams, Mae Busch, Rin Tin Tin Jr., Martin Spellman, Jimmy Aubrey, George Chesebro, Bud Osborne, Frank LaRue

Studio: 
Metropolitan Pictures Corporation

Director: 
Raymond K. Johnson

Plot:
Foxes are stolen from a fox farm and police cannot crack the case. Don Brady (Moore) is brought in to investigate undercover. Don pretends to be on summer vacation in Summer Valley with his nephew Buddy (Spellman) and his German Shepherd dog Rinty (Rin Tin Tin Jr.). There is a case of mistaken identity when another German Shepherd gets involved in the case.

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Watching 1939: Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film: 
Charlie Chan in Reno (1939)

Release date: 
May 31, 1939

Cast: 
Sidney Toler, Ricardo Cortez, Phyllis Brooks, Slim Summerville, Kane Richmond, Pauline Moore, Kay Linaker, Louise Henry, Victor Sen Yung (billed as Sen Yung), Charles D. Brown, Iris Wong, Robert Lowery, Virginia Sale (uncredited)

Studio: 
20th Century Fox

Director: 
Norman Foster

Plot:
Mary Whitman (Moore) heads to Reno for a divorce and stays in a hotel for women waiting on their divorce run by Vivian Wells (Brooks) and Dr. Ainsley (Cortez). Upon arrival, Mary encounters Jeanne Bently (Henry), who has broken up Mary’s marriage and will be marrying her ex-husband. That night, Jeanne is found dead, and Mary is accused. Mary’s soon-to-be ex-husband Curtis (Richmond) calls their friend detective Charlie Chan (Toler) to help investigate the case.

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Watching 1939: Stronger Than Desire (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film: 
Stronger Than Desire (1939)

Release date: 
June 30, 1939

Cast: 
Virginia Bruce, Walter Pidgeon, Lee Bowman, Ann Dvorak, Ilka Chase, Ann E. Todd (billed as Ann Todd), Rita Johnson, Richard Lane, Paul Stanton, Ferike Boros, Barbara Bedford (uncredited), Tom Neal (uncredited),

Studio: 
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Director: 
Leslie Fenton

Plot:
Elizabeth Flagg (Bruce) is the wife of successful lawyer Tyler Flagg (Pidgeon). Tyler stays busy with his cases and Elizabeth gets bored. To pass the time, she is courted by Michael McLain (Bowman). On the eve of traveling to Europe with her family, Michael blackmails Elizabeth for letters she wrote him. She shoots him, but Michael’s wife Eva (Dvorak) is accused of killing her husband.

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Watching 1939: On Trial (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film:  On Trial (1939)

Release date: 
April 4, 1939

Cast: 
Margaret Lindsay, John Litel, Edward Norris, Janet Chapman, James Stephenson, Larry Williams, Nedda Harrigan, John Ridgely (uncredited)

Studio: 
Warner Bros.

Director: 
Terry O. Morse

Plot:
Robert Strickland (Litel) is on trial for killing Gerald Trask (Stephenson), who was his best friend. Stickland’s attorney is young and inexperienced Arbuckle (Norris), who took the case to further his career. The film follows the testimonies of Trask’s wife (Harrigan), Trask’s assistant (Williams), Strickland’s six-year-old daughter (Chapman), and Strickland’s wife (Lindsay).

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Watching 1939: Boy Slaves (1939)

In 2011, I announced I was trying to see every film released in 1939. This new series chronicles films released in 1939 as I watch them. As we start out this blog feature, this section may become more concrete as I search for a common thread that runs throughout each film of the year. Right now, that’s difficult. 

1939 film:  Boy Slaves (1939)

Release date:  Feb. 2, 1939

Cast: 
Anne Shirley, Roger Daniel, James McCallion, Alan Baxter, Johnny Fitzgerald, Walter Ward, Charles Powers, Walter Tetley, Frank Malo, Paul White, Arthur Hohl, Charles Lane, Irving Bacon (uncredited), DeForest Covan (uncredited), Olin Howland (uncredited), Helen MacKellar (uncredited)

Studio:  RKO Radio Pictures

Director:  P.J. Wolfson

Plot:
Jesse (Daniel) runs away from home to help earn more money for his family. He falls in with a gang of boys led by Tim (McCallion). Thinking he’s helping the group, Jesse is responsible for the group working in a turpentine work camp.

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