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TCM Archives - Forbidden Hollywood Collection, Vol. 2 (The Divorcee / A Free Soul / Night Nurse / Three on a Match / Female) (2008)

Norma Shearer , Lionel Barrymore , Clarence Brown , Michael Curtiz  |  NR |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

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TCM Archives - Forbidden Hollywood Collection, Vol. 2 (The Divorcee / A Free Soul / Night Nurse / Three on a Match / Female) + TCM Archives: Forbidden Hollywood Collection - Volume One (Waterloo Bridge (1931) / Baby Face / Red-Headed Woman) + Forbidden Hollywood Collection: Volume Three (Other Men's Women / The Purchase Price / Frisco Jenny / Midnight Mary / Heroes for Sale / Wild Boys of the Road)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Norma Shearer, Lionel Barrymore, Clark Gable, Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck
  • Directors: Clarence Brown, Michael Curtiz
  • Format: Box set, Black & White, Color, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • DVD Release Date: March 4, 2008
  • Run Time: 449 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000YRY7VC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #35,023 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "TCM Archives - Forbidden Hollywood Collection, Vol. 2 (The Divorcee / A Free Soul / Night Nurse / Three on a Match / Female)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • All-new documentary: Thou Shalt Not: Sex, Sin, and Censorship in Pre-Code Hollywood
  • Commentary by film historians Jeffrey Vance and Tony Maietta on The Divorcee and Night Nurse
  • Theatrical trailers of Female, Night Nurse, and Three on a Match

Editorial Reviews

Forbidden Hollywood Collection Vol. II (TCM Archives) (DVD)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
165 of 171 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forbidden Hollywood 2: More Films, More Quality November 20, 2007
Verified Purchase
March will mark the release of some PreCode gems on this Forbidden Hollywood set, in particular for Norma Shearer fans.

"The Divorcee" (1930). Ms. Shearer's Academy award winning performance as Jerry in the role her husband, Irving Thalberg, initially thought she wasn't sexy enough to play (a few wonderfully seductive portraits, courtesy of Mr. Hurrell were enough to prove his doubts had no basis) is excellent. Great minor role by her future leading man, Robert Montgomery, as well.

"A Free Soul" (1931). Ms. Shearer is Jan Ashe; Mr. Lionel Barrymore (in his Academy Award winning role) is her alcoholic, lawyer father, Stephen Ashe. Young Clark Gable made his cinematic bones with his role as mob heavy Ace Wilfong. For those who've only known Norma for "Marie Antoinette" and "The Women", be prepared for an entirely different actress. Ms. Shearer, resplendent in her erotic white gown, is pure bombshell.

"Night Nurse" (1931). Barbara Stanwyck was at her best in PreCodes (though I think "Illicit" is a better film) and Joan Blondell packs a punch as her nurse friend. This film has a plot to kill children, a nymphomanical mother, drug references and Clark Gable mobbing up again as Nick, the chauffeur.

"Three on a Match"(1932). Anne Dvorak, Joan Blondell and Bette Davis play the three ladies who share the karmic match. One's a bad girl who turns her life around (Blondell); another one is a good girl who remains true to her goodness (Bette Davis); the third has all the luck, money and the love of a faithful husband (Dvorak), but throws it all away for booze, drugs and shady men. Humphrey Bogart, also making his start as a mob heavy, plays her connection/kidnapper, Harve while the charming Warren Williams plays her abandoned husband, Robert.
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65 of 68 people found the following review helpful
A little over a year after the release of volume one, Warner Home Video is finally giving us volume 2 of its Forbidden Hollywood series. There are supposedly to be two releases of this series a year from this point forward. Included in this set are:
a. Five films instead of the three in volume one.
b. Commentaries for two of the films.
c. A new documentary on the precode genre.

The films included are:

"The Divorcee" (1930) and "A Free Soul" (1931). These two films feature great performances from Norma Shearer. In "The Divorcee" she plays a wife who discovers her husband has cheated on her. When confronted he admits what he did but insists it meant nothing. However, he has a different attitude when Norma does the same with hubby's best friend (Robert Montgomery). The two divorce and Norma enters into a long string of ill-fated affairs. Shearer won Best Actress for her performance.
In "A Free Soul" alcoholic attorney Stephen Ashe (Lionel Barrymore) and his daughter Jan (Norma Shearer) have always lived a lifestyle of which the rest of their socialite family disapproved. Stephen has always taught his daughter to go her own way and not pay attention to what other people think. Now this may be good advice when it has to do with priggish conventions rooted in tradition rather than right and wrong. However, what Stephen has failed to point out to Jan is that people also generally think it is a bad idea to walk into a busy intersection blind-folded, and just because this is a majority opinion does not make it a convention ripe for the testing. Thus, completely blindfolded, Jan walks into the busy intersection that is the world of gangster Ace Wilfong (Clark Gable), a murderer that her father has recently managed to get acquitted in one of his more sober moments.
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57 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another good set of pre-code gems December 7, 2007
Verified Purchase
The announcement of the second set of the Forbidden Hollywood series is welcome. The set falls neatly into 2 groups - the MGM pair and the Warners trio.

The former are well mounted up-market A pictures with the prestigious Norma Shearer. Shearer was the wife of MGM wonderboy producer Irving Thalberg and his management of her limited talent was masterful. Both films carefully showcase her in "modern" stories of liberated women with attitudes to sex which were scandalous in 1930.

- In "The Divorcee", Shearer won the best actress Oscar playing a woman who divorces her husband because he is unfaithful then proceeds to "liberate" herself with other men. The film is a very early talkie with all the associated limitations - stagy, endless talk and some corny acting, including a very mannered Shearer. The disk contains a commentary which notes these limitations, particularly Shearer's.
- "A Free Soul" enhanced Shearer's reputation as THE prototype of the sexually liberated woman in this tale of a woman whose fiance, Leslie Howard, murders her lover, a very raunchy Clark Gable. Lionel Barrymore won an Oscar for his performance as Shearer's lawyer father and deservedly so. This is a much better film than "The Divorcee", demonstrating how quickly Hollywood progressed with talkies - better direction, photography, recording and acting. The story is really interesting with some great twists and Shearer is generally less mannered and accordingly much more effective than the earlier film. She also wears some of the best clothes ever seen on the screen, transforming her dumpy figure into a svelte and sexy one.

The remaining trio reflect Warner's assembly line approach to film making at the time and have shorter running times and faster pace.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Haven't watched it.
Published 1 month ago by Likky
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Movies worth watching
Good Movies worth watching !!
Published 1 month ago by big bang
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by Believer
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
early movie classics--very early
Published 3 months ago by ollientn
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing
love old Hollywood! love the writing, costumes, sets and actors. it's wonderful to see actors is such fully developed roles.
Published 5 months ago by avid fan
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I got this in hopes that it was the one my brother wanted and it was and he enjoyed it so much! I was happy to see I found it.
Published 6 months ago by Diane D. Villela
5.0 out of 5 stars Movie
Very happy with with the movies. Love all 30's old movies. Very good quality. Love them all. Very happy with all of them.
Published 8 months ago by Sherry L. Minor
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Quality
Nice movies that honestly stump me as to why they are considered "forbidden" because they're tame compared to today. Read more
Published 8 months ago by dennis
5.0 out of 5 stars old movies
I love old movies - the quality is excellent! the stories are so good! some of my favorite actors! order one!
Published 10 months ago by Debra5656
5.0 out of 5 stars The most solid volume in the whole collection!
This collection features 5 extraordinary films that show off the true magnificent of the leading ladies in early 1930's Hollywood. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Macy
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