Watching 1939: Beauty for the Asking (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: 
Beauty for the Asking (1939)

Release date: 
Feb. 10, 1939

Cast: 
Lucille Ball, Patric Knowles, Donald Woods, Frieda Inescort, Inez Courtney, Leona Maricle, Frances Mercer, Whitney Bourne, Kay Sutton, Ann Evers, Charles Coleman (uncredited), Leon Belasco (uncredited)

Studio: 
RKO Radio Pictures

Director: 
Glenn Tryon

Plot:
Jean Russell (Ball) is jilted by her fiancée Denny Williams (Knowles), when he marries $10 million heiress Flora Barton-Williams (Inescort). After also losing her job, Jean tries to focus on marketing a cold cream that she has been developing in her kitchen. Jean becomes a successful cosmetic entrepreneur with a cold cream and beauty salon with Denny and his wife as an investor in the business, with Denny trying to get back in Jean’s good favors.

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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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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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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: 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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