CURLY TOP
1935, 20th Century Fox, 75 min, USA, Dir: Irving Cummings

Elizabeth (Shirley Temple) is a spunky orphan whose talent for singing catches the attention of Edward (John Boles), a wealthy young attorney who decides to adopt the young upstart. When her older sister Mary (Rochelle Hudson) explains that she promised her parents she and Elizabeth would never be separated, Edward arranges for both of them to move to his estate. Complications arise when he and another young man both fall for the older sister and Elizabeth steps in to play cupid. Musical highlights include Shirley singing “Animal Crackers In My Soup.”


HAIL THE CONQUERING HERO
1944, Universal, 100 min, USA, Dir: Preston Sturges

When Eddie Bracken is discharged from the military for chronic hay fever, his pals decide to send him home with a reputation as a great war hero. What ensues is a flurry of patriotic fervor, some genuine and some ridiculous but all of it hilarious in writer-director Preston Sturges' hands. Sturges' incisive view of what defines true heroism during wartime is as spot-on today as it was in 1944, and his direction of an ensemble of gifted character actors is a timeless delight.


NIGHT HAS A THOUSAND EYES
1948, Universal, 81 min, USA, Dir: John Farrow

Edward G. Robinson gives a doom-laden performance as a bogus carnival mentalist who suddenly becomes cursed with the ability to actually see into the future - and he sees a dreadful fate for his best friend's daughter. A flower crushed underfoot, a sudden wind, a clock striking 11, the paw of a lion ... what does it all mean? Director John Farrow, always at his most stylish in noir terrain, adapts from the novel by master of suspense Cornell Woolrich (REAR WINDOW). Costarring Gail Russell and John Lund, with darkly evocative camerawork by John F. Seitz.


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