A light look at western films, as far back as the nickelodeon days, all the way to then current Cinerama. Scenes fro the most famous titles in the genre like the Covered Wagon, Stage Coach and High Noon are shown. Also, a look at a Japanese version of Shane, and foreign language dubbed scenes.
Traces the career of onetime superstar Jolson, from his start as a Russian immigrant to his stage and film years. The documentary examines his huge success in the Ziegfield Follies, and his hit early talkies, then his decline to obscurity in the 1940's, followed by a sensational comeback.
Overall look at the gangster films of the 1930's, mainly from Warner Brothers productions with tough guy stars like Bogart and Cagney. Montages of car chases, shootouts and fighting are accompanied by a semi-serious narration following along the subtitle's premise. Newsreel clips show real life criminals like Capone and Dillinger.
The world of the screen musical, starting with The Jazz Singer (1927), with emphasis on the big extravaganzas of the 1930s with the Busby Berkley-directed hits starring Dick Powell and Ruby Keeler and Fred Astaire's famed dance teaming with Ginger Rogers.
A look at the stars of the early years of American slapstick, with a special emphasis on Mack Sennett's productions, from the Keystone Kops era into the talkies of the 1930's. Also, footage from Keaton's Cops (1922) and Fields' The Barbershop (1933), an a mad montage of Sennett's famous chase sequences.
In this part, the comedians of the sound era are looked at, including a sequence from another W.C.Fields short, "The Barber Shop"(1933), the Red Skelton feature "The Fuller Brush Man" (1948) and Abbott and Costello's "Who's on First?" routine from an Army-Navy screen magazine sequence. Also seen are Bob Hope at golf, Martin and Lewis greeting fans, and the car chase from "It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" (1963)
From World War One to Korea, Hollywood stars have been involved in America's wars, from selling war bonds to entertaining the troops to joining the armed forces themselves. Prominently shown are scenes at the Hollywood Canteen and USO shows with Bob Hope. Stars in uniform including Robert Montgomery, Clark Gable, Jimmy Stewart and Douglas Fairbanks, Jnr. are show.
An examination of how films have been used to advance causes and ideas, from the early war films with their uncomplicated patriotic messages, to more serious topics involving unemployment and depression, to racial intolerance. Also, a look at foreign propaganda films including those from Hitler's Germany and more recent soviet productions.
The film traces the adventure hero that can often be seen in romantic costume epics, the ones essayed by the kings of the genre, Douglas Fairbanks in the 1920s and Errol Flynn in the 1930s-40's. Scenes from "Zorro" (1920), "Robin Hood" (1938) and "The Sea Hawk" (1940) are shown.
Overview of Kim's swift rise from Chicago model to current status as movie sex symbol. Scenes include her beach house, her artwork and partying with her art colony friends. we see her incognito in a wig in a crowd, and extracts from her films are shown, including Pushover (1954),Picnic (1955), Bell Book and Candle (1960) and the still in production Of Human Bondage (1964).
Rita's early days as part of her parent's dancing act leads to film parts, bigger and better until she's a leading lady, paired with top male stars. Scenes from some of her best remembered films are shown, such as "You'll Never get Rich" (1941) and "Gilda" (1946). Also seen are behind the scenes shots on the sets of her current film, "Circus World" (1964).