Pre-code movies worth a watchby Apophos | created - 18 Sep 2018 | updated - 11 months ago | Public
Movies that were released before the Hays code
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2. Lonesome (1928)
Passed | 69 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Two lonely people in the big city meet and enjoy the thrills of an amusement park, only to lose each other in the crowd after spending a great day together. Will they ever see each other again?
6. The Public Enemy (1931)
Not Rated | 83 min | Crime, Drama
A young hoodlum rises up through the ranks of the Chicago underworld, even as a gangster's accidental death threatens to spark a bloody mob war.
8. Baby Face (1933)
Approved | 71 min | Drama, Romance
A young woman, sexually exploited all her life, decides to turn the tables and exploit the hapless men at a big city bank - by gleefully sleeping her way to the top.
10. I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932)
Passed | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
Wrongly convicted James Allen serves in the intolerable conditions of a southern chain gang, which later comes back to haunt him.
12. Murder! (1930)
TV-PG | 92 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller
A juror in a murder trial, after voting to convict, has second thoughts and begins to investigate on his own before the execution.
14. Safe in Hell (1931)
Passed | 73 min | Crime, Drama
After accidentally killing the man who raped her and forced her into prostitution, a New Orleans woman flees to a Caribbean island. While she awaits her fiancé, the vicious local police chief sets his sights on her.
15. Imitation of Life (1934)
Approved | 111 min | Drama, Romance
A struggling widow and her daughter take in a black housekeeper and her fair-skinned daughter; the two women start a successful business, but face familial, identity, and racial issues along the way.
16. The Letter (1929)
Passed | 65 min | Drama
Jeanne Eagels plays the bored and restless Leslie Crosbie who turns to another man, Geoffrey Hammond (Herbert Marshall) for attention when neglected by her husband Robert (Reginald Owen). ... See full summary »
17. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1931)
Not Rated | 98 min | Horror, Sci-Fi
Dr. Jekyll faces horrible consequences when he lets his dark side run wild with a potion that transforms him into the animalistic Mr. Hyde.
19. The Maltese Falcon (1931)
Passed | 80 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
A lovely dame with dangerous lies employs the services of a private detective, who is quickly caught up in the mystery and intrigue of a statuette known as the Maltese Falcon.
20. The Broadway Melody (1929)
Passed | 100 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
A pair of sisters from the vaudeville circuit try to make it big time on Broadway, but matters of the heart complicate the attempt.
Votes: 6,031 | Gross: $6.12M
22. Tarnished Lady (1931)
83 min | Drama
Tarnished Lady is a 1931 Pre-Code American drama film directed by George Cukor. The screenplay by Donald Ogden Stewart is based on his short story, A Story of a New York Lady.
24. Sin Takes a Holiday (1930)
Passed | 81 min | Comedy, Romance
Dowdy Sylvia accepts her boss' marriage proposal, even though he only asked her to avoid marriage to another woman. As a wealthy wife, Sylvia changes from ugly duckling to uninhibited swan ... See full summary »
26. The Matrimonial Bed (1930)
Passed | 69 min | Comedy
It is the fifth anniversary of the death of Adolphe Noblet who died in a train wreck. His servant and friends still worship him but don't care much for his wife Sylvaine's second husband ... See full summary »
27. The Greeks Had a Word for Them (1932)
Passed | 79 min | Comedy
Sophisticated comedy: a trio of money hungry women who all have sugar daddies who keep them in the lap of luxury, even as they drive the men crazy. Each woman represents a different ... See full summary »
28. Confessions of a Co-Ed (1931)
75 min | Drama
A young college student gets pregnant by the man she loves, but circumstances prevent their marrying, so she marries a classmate she doesn't love. Soon, however, her lover returns, and she finds herself in a dilemma as to who to choose.
29. Merrily We Go to Hell (1932)
Not Rated | 78 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A drunken newspaperman is rescued from his alcoholic haze by an heiress whose love sobers him up and encourages him to write a play, but he lapses back into dipsomania.
33. The Beast of the City (1932)
Passed | 86 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
Police Chief Jim Fitzpatrick ruthlessly goes after organized crime and is prepared to use brutal and violent methods to fight it.
Votes: 994 | Gross: $0.89M
34. Freaks (1932)
Not Rated | 64 min | Drama, Horror
A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.
35. The Story of Temple Drake (1933)
Not Rated | 70 min | Drama
A wealthy but neurotic Southern belle finds herself trapped in the hideout of a gang of vicious bootleggers. The gang's leader lusts after her, and is determined not to let anything stand in the way of his having her.
36. Three on a Match (1932)
Passed | 63 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
Although Vivian Revere is seemingly the most successful of a trio of reunited schoolmates, she throws it away by descending into a life of debauchery and drugs.
41. Murders in the Zoo (1933)
Passed | 62 min | Crime, Horror
A monomaniacal zoologist is pathologically jealous of his beautiful but unfaithful wife Evelyn and will not stop short of murder to keep her.
42. Gabriel Over the White House (1933)
Passed | 86 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance
A political hack becomes President during the height of the Depression and undergoes a metamorphosis into an incorruptible statesman after a near-fatal accident.
43. Wild Boys of the Road (1933)
Approved | 68 min | Adventure, Drama
In the depths of the Depression, two teenage boys strike out on their own in order to help their struggling parents and find life on the road tougher than expected.