Posted by vp19 on 2014.10.18 at 22:55
Current mood: nostalgic
Above is Paramount p1202-1106, the first Carole Lombard portrait copyrighted 1936, a pivotal year for her for reasons beyond the start of her romance with Clark Gable. Professionally, in ’36 Lombard arrived for good as a top-tier star; there was no turning back.
It just so happens that one of the publications brought online by the Media History Digital Library (http://mediahistoryproject.org/) is something called the Motion Picture Review Digest. Its name defines its purpose, as it encapsulates reviews of recent films from a variety of sources, newspapers and magazines, both general purpose and trade sheets.
The library has uploaded copies from 1936 to 1939, and we’ll take a look at them year by year, beginning with reviews the Digest printed during 1936 and listed in its quarterly editions. Rather than list them issue by issue, we’ll examine them by movie (as film reviews often were shown in two different quarterlies), chronologically by date of release. Before we do that, here’s a sample of how the Digest lists reviews:
With that in mind, let’s begin with “Hands Across The Table,” released in October 1935 (and presumably receiving many reviews in the December 1935 quarterly) but the topic of some reviews in early 1936:
“Hands Across The Table”:
“Love Before Breakfast”:
“The Princess Comes Across”:
“My Man Godfrey”:
Some fascinating contemporary thoughts, particularly about “Godfrey” — it certainly was well-received, yet it hadn’t yet warranted a description as “classic.” But unlike Godfrey’s portfolio in 1929, its stock would rise in ensuing years.