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Forbidden Hollywood Collection: Volume 6

4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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(Apr 02, 2013)
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Editorial Reviews

Audacious, controversial and shockingly frank, Forbidden Hollywood: Volume Six turns the spotlight on adultery, alcoholism, prostitution and racism, issues the Production Code would soon ban from the screen. Starring the pre-Code era’s biggest stars, including John Gilbert, Richard Barthelmess, Myrna Loy, Kay Francis and Ann Dvorak, these four rarely seen gems are a provocative reflection of American mores in a not-so-innocent time. The Wet Parade (1932): Demon whiskey brings ruin to two families in this all-star adaptation of Upton Sinclair’s impassioned novel. Downstairs (1932): A philandering chauffeur (Gilbert) creates havoc in an upper-class household. Mandalay (1934): A Russian refugee (Francis) seeks revenge upon the ex-lover (Ricardo Cortez) who sold her into lavery. Massacre (1934): A college-educated Sioux (Barthelmess) wreaks vengeance upon the white officials who abused his family and cheated his people.

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Product Details

  • Actors: John Gilbert, Richard Barthelmess, Myrna Loy, Kay Francis, Ann Dvorak
  • Format: NTSC
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
  • Studio: Warner Archive
  • DVD Release Date: April 2, 2013
  • Run Time: 330 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00C68SHOK
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,815 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

The latest in the Forbidden Hollywood series has a Kay Francis (always a treat to watch) film that is worth purchasing the whole set, although a Pre-code Richard Barthelmess film is another good reason.

1934 Mandalay with Kay Francis, Ricardo Cortez, & Lyle Talbot is the main feature. The scene where boards the boat at the last minute with no luggage, gets a cabin, & next we see her she is unpacking a trunk is incredible. Mandalay is 5 star stuff - not to be missed

The other films are: Massacre (1934) a good solid movie with Barthelmess & Ann Dvorak (another great actress); The Wet Parade (1932) an OK (& long!) movie with Walter Huston, Myrna Loy, & Neil Hamilton; & Downstairs (1932) a pretty good but downbeat film with John Gilbert. Overall, a pretty good assortment.

Some of the films include the original trailers, but there are no other extras. Warner Archives has a lot of pre-codes available, most of them minor films. The Forbidden Hollywood collections are the best. Note: this review is based on the films, not the quality of the discs or the format!
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I thought this Forbidden collection a bit less entertaining than some of the others, but still worthwhile from an historical point of view. The Wet Parade provides interesting insights into the prohibition years. Massacre is an interesting look at the treatment of native Americans that is ahead of its time. Because these were done in the 30's there is an interesting historical perspective. The other films: Mandalay and Downstairs are interesting because of the stars: Kay Francis and John Gilbert. Mandalay also has an interesting perspective on white slavery, a "forbidden" topic. The Gilbert film is interesting because it is one of those Gilbert "talkies" that preceded his ultimate demise in "talkies". In this one his voice is okay and he is quite good as a chauffeur with no scruples.
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I love just about every film that WA has put into the Forbidden Hollywood series, and can't wait for more releases - I'm surprised they didn't put out a set just for Kay Francis instead of individual releases, considering the number of pre-codes she was in.
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By Colom on October 30, 2013
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I've wanted to see Downstairs for decades and it didn't disappoint. Excellent film with a great performance from Gilbert. Mandalay with Kay Francis was also good.
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I bought this only for MANDALAY - the other movies were completely unknown and had no interest for me.

But now I've watched MANDALAY - loved it - and looking at the other titles. DOWNSTAIRS stars John Gilbert, and the premise was his idea. Now that I have this, I will finally see Richard Barthelmess, admittedly not at his height, but still.

This is an expensive box set. I bought it for MANDALAY alone and I don't regret it. And just may even enjoy the others.
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