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San Francisco

San Francisco

San Francisco: Mary Blake arrives at Blackie Nortons Paradise gambling hall and beer garden looking for work as a singer. Blackie embarrasses her by asking to see her legs, but does hire her. She faints from hunger. Nob Hill Socialite Jack Burley and Maestro Baldini of the Tivoli Opera House see her singing and offer her a chance to do opera, but Blackie has her under a two-year contract which she sorrowfully stands by. Later, when he makes up posters featuring Mary in tights, she does leave for the Tivoli. Blackie gets an injunction against Burley, but knocks out the process server when he hears Marys performance as Marguerite in Faust. She asks her to marry him and she agrees to go back to the Paradise as his kind of singer, but Blackies childhood chum Father Tim intervenes. After Blackie slugs the priest, Mary leaves. She is soon the star of the Tivoli and Blackies place is closed down. She sings a rousing San Francisco on behalf of the Paradise at the annual Chicken Ball and wins the $10,000 prize which Blackie throws to the floor. As she storms out of the hall a terrible rumble betokens the famous San Francisco earthquake. Buildings collapse, streets split wide open, the city burns, the army dynamites whole sections of town. After staggering around in a stupor Blackie finds Father Tim and the two of them find Mary at a Salvation Army camp. Backed by hundreds of others, they look out over the ruins which are gradually replaced by the shining new city with a reprise of the title song.

60/100
1969 Watch
Shadows of the Orient

Shadows of the Orient

Shadows of the Orient: Shadows of the Orient was originally (and still is) a Larry Darmour production made under the Empire Films banner in 1935 and released in August of 1935, although Motion Picture Herald did not review it until February of 1936. Following the reorganization of Monogram, after W. Ray Johnston, Scott R. Dunlap, Trem Carr and Paul Malvern broke away from their short stay at Republic Pictures, Monogram was in need of product to fill their exhibitor committments and picked up the film from whatever state-rights limbo it was in, and sent it back out on August 13, 1937 under a Monogram Pictures logo with nothing to indicate it was a re-issue of a two year-old film. Its first New York showing was at the Central Theatre on October 11, 1937, 27 months after initial release through the Empire exchanges, and it had lost three minutes from its original 68 minutes. The Foreword tells it all: Since the passing of the Oriental Exclusion Act the smuggling of aliens has been constant. Although the smuggling is less than a few years ago, when Chinese were brought into the United States from Mexico in carlots, the traffic has by no means ceased, according to immigration officials. The length of the frontier and sparsely settled regions makes patrolling impossible. These smugglers have no regard for human life and resort to any means to accomplish their selfish ends. The boss of the ring, at this time, is receiving fifteen hundred dollars per head on safe delivery. This films late 1937 re-issue release by Monogram may well be the reason that Esther Ralston used the name of Jane Carleton when she appeared in Universals Spy Ring which was filmed in late 1937. The foreword is quite possibly the only time that the border connecting Mexico with Texas, New Mexico, California and Arizona was referred to as a frontier in the 20th century.

40/100
1935 Watch