CALL HER SAVAGE
1932, 20th Century Fox, 88 min, USA, Dir: John Francis Dillon

If there is one film that deserves to be called “the most pre-Code film of them all,” it is John Francis Dillon’s CALL HER SAVAGE. In 1932, the Fox Film Corporation was desperate for a hit, so it brought Clara Bow (“The It Girl”) out of retirement and adapted a sensational novel for her, violating every rule of the 1930 Production Code. One reviewer called the film “a flashy, trashy, tasteless and unpleasant exhibit” but conceded that “not even the most captious can deny its superficial appeal.” With showy support from stunning Thelma Todd and lounge lizard Monroe Owsley, Clara Bow burns up the screen in one outrageous episode after another.


THE LUSTY MEN
1952, Warner Bros., 113 min, USA, Dir: Nicholas Ray

In this story of an indomitable woman and the men who will risk anything to have her, rodeo star Jeff McCloud (Robert Mitchum) hobbles back home to Oklahoma after a series of accidents. But when ambitious young rider Wes Merritt (Arthur Kennedy) hires McCloud as coach, the younger man's wife, Louise (Susan Hayward), is the lure that attracts McCloud. Louise is willing to allow McCloud's advances if it will help her husband; however, when the unstable triangle of passion inevitably leads to a confrontation between Merritt and McCloud, the aging rider enters one last rodeo just to thwart Merritt's ambition - but at a terrible price.


THE CAPTIVE CITY
1952, Park Circus/MGM, 91 min, Dir: Robert Wise

John Director Robert Wise and director of photography Lee Garmes capture the essence of Senator Estes Kefauver’s national crusade (he narrates the film’s epilogue) against organized crime in authentic “docu-noir” style. John Forsythe stars as a crusading newspaper editor who uncovers a sinister gambling syndicate whose corrupting influence renders the entire city helpless. Screenwriter Alvin Josephy based his script on his own experiences as a reporter uncovering organized crime in Santa Monica after World War II.


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