Watching 1939: Tail Spin (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: 
Tail Spin (1939)

Release date: 
Feb. 19, 1939

Cast: 
Alice Faye, Constance Bennett, Nancy Kelly, Joan Davis, Jane Wyman, Charles Farrell, Wally Vernon, Joan Valerie, Edward Norris, J. Anthony Hughes, Harry Davenport

Studio: 
20th Century Fox

Director: 
Roy Del Ruth

Plot:
Trixie Lee (Faye) and Babe Dugan (Davis) are two financially strapped girls who have joined a cross-country air competition, which goes from Los Angeles to Cleveland. When her plane cracks up, Trixie and Babe stay in Cleveland for their plane to be fixed and join a Powder Puff Flight Race. Their flight rivals include sensitive Lois Allen (Kelly) and socialite Gerry Lester (Bennett), who has her own custom plane.

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Musical Monday: Irish Eyes Are Smiling (1944)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals.
In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Irish Eyes Are Smiling (1944) – Musical #630

Studio:
20th Century Fox

Director:
Gregory Ratoff

Starring:
Monty Woolley, June Haver, Dick Haymes, Anthony Quinn, Beverly Whitney, Maxie Rosenbloom, Veda Ann Borg, Clarence Kolb, Emma Dunn (uncredited), Kenny Williams (uncredited), Marietta Canty (uncredited)
Themselves: Leonard Warren, Blanche Thebom

Plot:
Fictional biographical film of songwriter Ernest R. Ball (Haymes). The film chronicles when Ernest struggles as a songwriter and works to get to New York to follow singer and dancer Mary ‘Irish’ O’Neill (Haver).

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Watching 1939: Dust Be My Destiny (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: 
Dust Be My Destiny (1939)

Release date: 
Sept. 16, 1939

Cast: 
John Garfield, Priscilla Lane, Alan Hale, Frank McHugh, Billy Halop, Bobby Jordan, Charley Grapewin, John Litel, Henry Armetta, Stanley Ridges, Moroni Olsen, William B. Davidson, Ward Bond (uncredited), Chester Clute (uncredited), William Hopper (uncredited)

Studio: 
Warner Bros.

Director: 
Lewis Seiler

Plot:
Joe Bell (Garfield) went to jail for a crime he didn’t commit. When the law finds he’s innocent, Joe is released from jail, but trouble follows him. Again ending up at the wrong place at the wrong time, Joe is arrested and sent to a work camp. At the camp he meets Mabel (Lane), the step-daughter of the foreman and the two fall in love. When Mabel’s stepfather dies after attacking her, the two run away knowing they will be accused of murder.

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Musical Monday: The Girl of the Golden West (1938)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals.
In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
The Girl of the Golden West (1938) – Musical #262

Studio:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Director:
Robert Z. Leonard

Starring:
Jeanette MacDonald, Nelson Eddy, Walter Pidgeon, Leo Carrillo, Buddy Ebsen, Cliff Edwards, Olin Howland, Leonard Penn, Priscilla Lawson, H.B. Warner, Monty Woolley, Noah Beery, Bill Cody Jr., Jeanne Ellis, Brandon Tynan, Russell Simpson (uncredited)

Plot:
Mary Robbins (MacDonald) traveled out west to California as a child, and now as an adult runs the saloon on the frontier. The masked outlaw Ramirez (Eddy) is wreaking havoc on the countryside as he holds up stagecoaches. After meeting Mary, Ramirez disguises himself as Lieutenant Johnson to get closer to her, and they fall in love. However, Sheriff Jack Rance (Pidgeon) is also in love with Mary and is hunting Ramirez and his gang.

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Musical Monday: Joy of Living (1938)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals.
In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Joy of Living (1938) – Musical #276

Studio:
RKO Radio Pictures

Director:
Tay Garnett

Starring:
Irene Dunne, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Alice Brady, Guy Kibbee, Jean Dixon, Lucille Ball, Eric Blore, Warren Hymer, Billy Gilbert, Dorothy Steiner, Estelle Steiner, Frank Milan, Franklin Pangborn, John Qualen, Clarence Nash (uncredited), Grady Sutton (uncredited), Charles Lane (uncredited), Richard Alexander (uncredited), Tay Garnett (uncredited)

Plot:
Margaret Garrett (Dunne) is an overworked Broadway star whose family (Brady, Ball, Kibbee) is living off of her. Exhausted and also learning she’s near broke because of the chiseling family, she meets Dan Brewster (Fairbanks), who teaches her how to have fun and relax.

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Watching 1939: The Devil’s Daughter (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: 
The Devil’s Daughter (1939)

Release date: 
Dec. 7, 1939

Cast: 
Nina Mae McKinney, Jack Carter, Ida James, Hamtree Harrington, Willa Mae Lang, Emmett ‘Babe’ Wallace

Studio: 
Sack Amusement Enterprises

Director: 
Arthur H. Leonard

Plot:
Sylvia Walton (James) travels from her home in New York to Jamaica, because her father left his banana plantation to her in his will. However, her step-sister Isabelle Walton (McKinney) has already been running the plantation for years. Isabelle goes into hiding in the jungle when Sylvia arrives, and Isabelle conspires with Sylvia’s boyfriend Philip (Carter). In order to get the plantation, Isabelle uses “obeah” (a type of sorcery) to scare Sylvia away for the plantation and for the love of John Loden (Wallace).

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Musical Monday: Carnival in Costa Rica (1947)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals.
In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Carnival In Costa Rica (1947) – Musical #625

Studio:
20th Century Fox

Director:
Gregory Ratoff

Starring:
Dick Haymes, Vera-Ellen, Cesar Romero, Celeste Holm, Anne Revere, J. Carrol Naish, Pedro de Cordoba, Barbara Whiting, Tommy Ivo, Fritz Feld
Themselves: Ernesto Lecuona, Ernesto Zambrano

Plot:
The fathers of Luisa Molina (Vera-Ellen) and Pepe Castro (Romero) have arranged that the two will marry when they return home to Costa Rica from school in the United States. The problem is that Pepe is already in love with American Celeste (Holm), who has returned home with him. And during the carnival, Luisa meets and falls in love with American Jeff Stephens (Haymes).

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Watching 1939: Double Deal (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: 
Double Deal (1939)

Release date: 
April 2, 1939

Cast: 
Monte Hawley, Jeni Le Gon, Edward Thompson, Florence O’Brien, Freddie Jackson, Buck Woods, Maceo Bruce Sheffield, Juanita Moore (uncredited)
Shelton Brooks as himself

Studio: 
George Randol Productions, released by Sack Amusement Enterprises and Astor Pictures Corp.

Director: 
Arthur Dreifuss

Plot:
Gangster Dude Markey (Thompson) and gambler Jim McCoy (Hawley) are both in love with nightclub performer Nita (Gon). McCoy’s naive younger brother Tommy (Jackson) gets involved in a jewel robbery and someone is killed. Dude ends up with an alibi and tries to pin the crime on Tommy.

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Musical Monday: Robin and the 7 Hoods (1964)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals.
In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Robin and the 7 Hoods (1964) – Musical #329

Studio:
Warner Bros.

Director:
Gordon Douglas

Starring:
Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Bing Crosby, Edward G. Robinson (uncredited), Peter Falk, Allen Jenkins, Jack La Rue, Victor Buono, Phillip Crosby, Toni Basil (uncredited), Hans Conried (uncredited), Tony Randall (uncredited), Sig Ruman (uncredited)

Plot:
Set in Chicago during the 1920s, two rival gangs compete for control of the city. Guy Gisborne (Falk) wants all the hoods in town to pay him for protection. His rival, Robbo (Sinatra) with his partners, Little John (Martin) and Will (Davis), get the reputation of robbing from the rich and giving to the poor when he donates money from Marian (Rush), the daughter of a deceased gang boss.

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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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