The Stanford Theatre

Fox Film Corp: 1915 through 1935

Including Silent Sundays every Sunday afternoon at 2 PM

This year is the 100th anniversary of Fox Film Corporation (and the 80th anniversary of its successor, 20th Century Fox). During its 20-year existence (1915–1935) the Fox Film Corporation, under the leadership of William Fox, was recognized as one of Hollywood's top studios.

Fox had a reputation for producing films by leading directors, including John Ford, Frank Borzage,, and F.W. Murnau, for bringing European actors and directors to Hollywood, and for developing its own contract players (Janet Gaynor, Spencer Tracy, Charles Farrell( into stars.

A majority of films produced by Fox Film Corporation have been lost due to storage vault fires and deterioration of the original nitrate film negatives and prints. Our calendar presents a selection of the silent era and early sound films that survive, all of which suggest the rich early history of one of America's great movie studios. Many of these films were originally shown at the Stanford Theatre, which was part of the Fox West Coast Theatre chain during the 1930s.

Every Sunday at 2:00 we present a silent double feature with live accompaniment by Dennis James at the Wurlitzer organ (with the exception of Four Sons and Sunrise, which will be shown with their original scores).

The Stanford Theatre is dedicated to bringing back the movie-going experience of Hollywood's Golden Age. It is one of the few places where you can still watch movies on a big screen projected the way they were intended — in 35mm prints. Great classic films were not made to be watched on a video screen in your living room. They depend on a larger-than-life image, and the shared reactions of a real audience.

The Stanford Theatre first opened in June of 1925. For decades nearly every important Hollywood picture played there on its first release. The people of Palo Alto saw them all for the very first time in this theatre.

In 1987 the Packard Foundation bought the theatre and restored it to its original condition. It quickly became America's most popular classic movie house. More people saw Casablanca there on its 50th anniverary in 1992 than at any other theatre in America.

The non-profit Stanford Theatre Foundation is dedicated to the preservation and public exhibition of films from the Golden Age of Hollywood. This means classic movies in a classic movie palace, complete with Wurlitzer organ rising from the orchestra pit every night before and after the 7:30 show, or providing the accompaniment to “silent” films.

Note: This is an unofficial posting of the Stanford Theatre schedules, from published information. This site is in no way connected with the Stanford Theatre nor the Stanford Theatre Foundation. Please check out the official site at in case this schedule isn't quite up-to-date! Programs are subject to change. For information, call (650) 324-3700.

(Showtimes in parentheses are for the Saturday screenings only.)

November 9 – 10: closed

November 11 – 12:
Call Her Savage (1932) 7:30
d John Francis Dillon. w Edwin Burke, from the novel by Tiffany Thayer. ph Lee Garmes. Fox. 87 min.

Clara Bow, Gilbert Roland, Thelma Todd, Monroe Owsley, Estelle Taylor.

After her meteoric success in It (1927), Clara Bow's private life and on-screen persona merged as one in the perception of the movie-going public. Persistent gossip fed by the frenzied output of hack writers in studio publicity departments and the popular movie trade press promoted her into an icon of liberated and promiscuous female behaviour which eventually led to her breakdown in 1931.

Call Her Savage was her comeback film and the second to last she made before retiring. It is a virtual catalog of pre-code era plot elements, involving miscegenation, illegitimacy, drunkennness, gambling and regeneration, all set against scenes in rural Texas, Chicago, and Greenwich Village. Though censored in Britain and in some areas of the U.S., a contemporary review in the Los Angeles Times praised Bow's performance and declared that "... her fame seems to have been recaptured with remarkable ease."

first played at the Stanford Theatre Dec 8, 1932; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Bachelor's Affairs (1932) 6:15, 9:10
d Alfred Werker. w Barry Conners, Philip Klein, from the play Precious by James Forbes. ph Norbert Brodine. Fox. 64 min.

Adolphe Menjou, Minna Gombell, Arthur Pierson, Joan Marsh, Alan Dinehart, Irene Purcell, Herbert Mundin, Don Alvarado.

On a steamship from Europe to New York, gold-digging sisters try to lure a millionaire into marriage.

first played at the Stanford Theatre July 14, 1932; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

November 13 – 14:
Steamboat Round the Bend (1935) (4:10), 7:30
d John Ford. w Dudley Nichols, Lamar Trotti, from the novel by Ben Lucien Berman. ph George Schneiderman. m Samuel Kaylin. 20th Century Fox. 82 min.

Will Rogers, Anne Shirley, Eugene Pallette, John McGuire, Irvin S. Cobb, Berton Churchill, Francis Ford, Stepin Fetchit, Roger Imhof, Raymond Hatton, Hobart Bosworth.

A raucous Fordian satire of melodramatic conventions and characters, in which Mississippi riverboat captain Will Rogers enters a steamboat race to save his nephew from being hanged in Baton Rouge.

Rogers' parents were both part Cherokee, and he had a long friendship with frequent co-star Stepin Fetchit (Lincoln Perry) dating to their days in vaudeville. Mel Watkins, author of Stepin Fetchit: The Life and Times of Lincoln Perry, argues that "... if Perry had been Irish, English, Italian or Jewish instead of Black, he probably would have been remembered and hailed along with Charlie Chaplin, Harold Lloyd, and Buster Keaton, as one of the finest performers to emerge in Hollywood's Golden Age of Comedy."

first played at the Stanford Theatre Sep 8, 1935; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

A Connecticut Yankee (1931) 5:45, 9:05
d David Butler. w William Conselman, from the novel A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain. ph Ernest Palmer. Fox. 95 min.

Will Rogers, William Farnum, Maureen O'Sullivan, Myrna Loy, Frank Albertson, Brandon Hurst, Mitchell Harris, Ward Bond.

A small town radio technician visits the laboratory of an eccentric inventor, where he is knocked unconscious by a suit of armour and transported back in time to the court of King Arthur. One of the 10 best films of the year according to the New York Times.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Mar 29, 1931; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

November 15:
"Kiss me, my fool!"
A Fool There Was (1915) 2:00
w/d Frank Powell, from the play by Porter Emerson Browne, and the poem The Vampire by Rudyard Kipling. William Fox. 67 min.

Theda Bara, Edward Jose, Mabel Frenyear, May Allison, Runa Hodges, Clifford Bruce, Victor Benoit, Minna Gale.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

Theda Bara in the original film role of a "vampire woman" who has dedicated herself to seducing men and ruining their lives. Her victim in this instance is a Wall Street lawyer and devoted family man traveling alone on a diplomatic mission to Europe.

Print courtesy of The Museum of Modern Art, New York.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

Regeneration (1915) 3:20
d Raoul Walsh. w Raoul Walsh & Carl Harbaugh, from the book My Mamie Rose by Owen Kildare. ph Georges Benoit. Fox. 72 min (approx).

Rockcliffe Fellowes, Anna Q. Nilsson, William Sheer, Carl Harbaugh, James Marcus, Maggie Weston, John McCann, H. McCoy.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

An early and powerfully realistic drama by famed director Raoul Walsh about the life of an orphan boy in a New York City slum whose life is changed by the earnest intervention of a socialite.

Filmed on location in NYC's Bowery.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

November 16 – 17: closed

November 18 – 19:
Common Clay (1930) 7:30
d Victor Fleming. w Jules Furthman, Cleves Kincaid, from the novel by Cleves Kincaid. ph Glen MacWilliams. m Arthur Kay. Fox . 89 min.

Constance Bennett, Lew Ayres, Tully Marshall, Matty Kemp, Purnell B. Pratt, Beryl Mercer, Charles McNaughton.

A pre-code gem about a young woman employed as a maid who is seduced and abandoned by the young man of the house. When she refuses to be bought off, the family investigates her past and her strength and character are revealed.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Aug 27, 1930; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Dante's Inferno (1935) 5:50, 9:10
d Harry Lachmann. w Philip Klein, Robert Yost. ph Rudolph Maté. m Hugo Friedhofer, Samuel Kaylin, R.H. Bassett, Peter Brunelli. Fox. 89 min.

Spencer Tracy, Claire Trevor, Henry B. Walthall, Alan Dinehart, Scott Beckett, Robert Gleckler, Rita Cansino (Hayworth).

A morality tale about an unscrupulous man who takes over a broken down amusement concession that presents dioramas depicting popular historical examples of sin and debauchery. After a disastrous fire he finds redemption through the love of his faithful wife.

Rita Hayworth (billed as Rita Cansino) dances in her film debut.

"The inferno sequence is one of the most unexpected, imaginative and striking pieces of cinema in Hollywood history." Halliwell

first played at the Stanford Theatre Aug 29, 1935; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

November 20 – 21:
Servants' Entrance (1934) (4:20), 7:30
d Frank Lloyd. w Samson Raphaelson, from the novel by Sigrid Boo. ph Hal Mohr. m Arthur Lange. Fox. 88 min.

Janet Gaynor, Lew Ayres, Walter Connolly, G.P. Huntley ,Jr., Siegfried Rumann, Louise Dresser, Astrid Allwyn, Ned Sparks.

A comedy (with an animated sequence by Walt Disney) about a rich married couple who fall on hard times and decide to get jobs as a maid and chauffeur to learn how to live on a limited income.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 5, 1934; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Change of Heart (1934) 6:00, 9:10
d John G. Blystone. w Sonya Levien, James Gleason, & Samuel Hoffenstein, from the novel Manhattan Love Song by Kathleen Norris. ph Hal Mohr. m Louis de Francesco. Fox. 77 min.

Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, James Dunn, Ginger Rogers, Dick Foran, Beryl Mercer, Gustav Von Seyffertitz, Shirley Temple.

The last of the twelve Fox films co-starring Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell. A story of four college graduates who journey to New York City to make their fortunes and encounter the realities of the depression.

Look fast to see tiny Shirley Temple interacting with James Dunn on the airplane.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Jul 14, 1934; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

November 22:
Upstream (1927) 2:00
d John Ford. w Randall H. Faye, from the story The Snake's Wife by Wallace Smith. ph Charles G. Clarke. Fox. 6 reels.

Nancy Nash, Earle Foxe, Grant Withers, Lydia Yeamans Titus, Raymond Hitchcock, Emile Chautard, Sammy Cohen, Francis Ford.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A comedy about actors of various talents living in a theatrical boarding house revolving around the ego of the "star boarder" played by the great Raymond Hitchcock.

This rare Ford silent comedy was lost for many decades until it was discovered in the New Zealand Film Archive and restored in 2010.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

The Iron Horse (1924) 3:20
d John Ford. w Charles Kenyon, John Russell. ph George Schneiderman. Fox. 150 min (approx).

George O'Brien, Madge Bellamy, Cyril Chadwick, Fred Kohler, Gladys Hulette, James Marcus, J. Farrell MacDonald, James Welch.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A mythologized tale of the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, starting with the signing of legislation by Abraham Lincoln and ending with the driving of the Golden Spike at Promontory, Utah.

John Ford weaves together the major narrative and historical elements that have become popularly accepted as essential truths about the role of railroads and the settling of the West.

One of the most influential and enduring movies of the 1920s.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

November 23 – 24: closed

November 25 – 26:
Just Imagine (1930) 7:30
d David Butler. w Buddy G. DeSylva, Lew Brown, Ray Henderson. ph Ernest Palmer. m HUgo Friedhofer. Fox. 113 min.

El Brendel, Maureen O'Sullivan, John Garrick, Frank Albertson, Marjorie White, Hobart Bosworth, Mischa Auer, Wilfred Lucas, Kenneth Thomson, Joyzelle.

A man is hit by lightning in 1930 and is revived in New York in 1980.

Just Imagine takes a satiric (and silly) look at how things have changed in the future, interspersed with musical numbers by DeSylva, Brown, and Henderson.

"Go down and take a look at that crazy picture!" Variety

first played at the Stanford Theatre Dec 7, 1930; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Up the River (1930) 5:45, 9:30
d John Ford. w Maurine Watkins. ph Joseph August. m Joseph McCarthy, James F. Hanley. Fox. 92 min.

Spencer Tracy, Warren Hymer, Humphrey Bogart, Claire Luce, JOan Lawes, Sharon Lynn, George MacFarlane, Gaylord Pendleton.

A comedy about two raucous convicts who escape from prison to save their ex-con friends from being falsely charged with a crime. Their real challenge comes when they have to break back into prison, without being discovered, in time to play the annual baseball game between prisoners and guards.

The only movie to feature both Spencer Tracy and Humphrey Bogart (who plays the "juvenile" lead here).

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

November 27 – 28:
Cavalcade (1933) (4:00), 7:30
d Frank Lloyd. w Reginald Berkeley, from the play by Noel Coward. ph Ernest Palmer. m Louis de Francesco. Fox. 112 min.

Clive Brook, Diana Wynyard, Ursula Jeans, Herbert Mundin, Una O'Connor, Irene Browne, Merle Tottenham, Beryl Mercer, Frank Lawton, Billy Bevan, Tempe Pigott, Margaret Lindsay.

Adapted from the celebrated play by Noel Coward, Cavalcade follows the members of two connected families from different social classes, and how they are affected by the major events in British history, from the death of Queen Victoria in 1899 through the Boer War to the Jazz Age and New Year's Eve of 1932.

This nearly forgotten film was very successful in its day (Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, and Interior Decoration), and deserves to be rediscovered.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Apr 23, 1933; last played Apr 1993

The Power and the Glory (1933) 6:00, 9:30
d William K. Howard. w Preston Sturges. ph James Wong Howe. m Bronislau Kaper. Fox. 76 min.

Spencer Tracy, Colleen Moore, Ralph Morgan, Helen Vinson, Clifford Jones, Henry Kolker, Sarah Padden, J. Farrell MacDonald.

A retrospective narrative, told by the protagonist's sympathetic lifelong friend, about the life of a man who rose from the lowly job of track inspector to the head of a major railroad, and who became feared and hated along the way.

This film was a precursor to Citizen Kane (made seven years later) both in form (it opens with the hero's funeral and the story is told via flashbacks and voice-overs) and in content (an American success story gone sour). The film helped establish Spencer Tracy as one of the most popular film actors of his generation. It was produced from Preston Sturges first screenplay, which he sold for a percentage rather than for a flat fee.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 17, 1933; last played Oct. 1991

November 29:
Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927) 2:00
d F. W. Murnau. w Karl Meyer, from the story Die Reise nach Tilsit by Hermann Sudermann. ph Charles Rosher & Karl Struss. m Hugo Riesenfeld. Fox. 97 min.

Janet Gaynor, George O'Brien, Margaret Livingston.

The great German director F. W. Murnau came to Hollywood in 1927 and made three films at Fox. The first of these, Sunrise, may be the greatest expression of the inherent poetry of the silent film medium. It was one of the first Hollywood films released with a synchronized music and sound effects soundtrack but without dialogue.

The story is simple and gives no hint of the beauty of the film. The Man and his Wife live in the country. He is seduced by the City Girl into a plan to drown his wife, but when the time comes he cannot do the deed. He spends the rest of the film trying to win back his wife's confidence.

The New York Times called Sunrise a masterpiece, and it often appears on lists of the 10 best movies ever made. Academy Awards for Best Unique and Artistic Production, to Janet Gaynor for Best Actress, and to Charles Rosher and Karl Struss for Best Cinematography.

This is a silent film, but we are playing it with the original synchronized Fox Movietone musical sound track (no live organ). Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 21, 1928; last played Sep 2004

Four Sons (1928) 3:50
d John Ford. w Philip Kelin, I.A.R. Wylie. ph Charles G. Clarke, George Schneiderman. m Carli Elinor, Erno Rapee. Fox. 100 min (approx).

Margaret Mann, James Hall, Earle Foxe, Charles Morton, Francis X. Bushman, Jr., George Meeker, Albert Gran, June Collyer

A story about the effect of WW I on the lives of four sons of a Bavarian widow. Three sons join the German Army and the fourth emigrates to America to avoid the war. He establishes a delicatessen but eventually joins the American Army in 1917 and returns to Germany to fight.

A very strong film from the late silent era (with music and sound effects sound track) that shows the stylistic influence of Ford's Fox Studio colleague F.W. Murnau. Four Sons was filmed on the village sets from Sunrise.

MovieTone musical score and sound effects. Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 28, 1928; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

November 30 – December 1: closed

December 2 – 3:
Bottoms Up (1934) 7:30
d David Butler. w B.G. De Sylva, David Butler, Sid Silvers. ph Arthur Miller. md Constantin Bakaleinikoff. Fox. 85 min.

Spencer Tracy, Pat Paterson, John Boles, Harry Green, Herbert Mundin, Sid Silvers, Thelma Todd, Robert Emmett O'Connor, Dell Henderson.

A young beauty prize winner from Canada arrives in Hollywood hoping to make it big in the movies. Three con men, led by the fast talking Spencer Tracy, see their chance and against all odds help the starlet find love and success. A lively satire about life in early 30s Hollywood interspersed with musical numbers.

first played at the Stanford Theatre May 16, 1934; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Me and My Gal (1932) 6:00, 9:05
d Raoul Walsh. w Arthur Kober. ph Arthur Miller. Fox. 79 min.

Spencer Tracy, Joan Bennett, George Walsh, Marion Burns, J. Farrell MacDonald, Noel Madison, Henry B. Walthall.

An enjoyable blend of romance, comedy, and melodrama about a cop and a waitress. If you know Morse code, you'll have an advantage when a paralyzed man gives the crucial clue by blinking.

This film has nothing to do with the later musical with a similar title.

first played at the Stanford Theatre June 8, 1991; last played June 1991

December 4 – 5:
Liliom (1930) 5:45
d Frank Borzage. w S.N. Behrman, Sonya Levien, from the play by Ferenc Molnár. ph Chester A. Lyons. m Richard Fall. Fox. 94 min.

Charles Farrell, Rose Hobart, Estelle Taylor, Lee Tracy, Walter Abel, James Marcus, Mildred Van Dorn, Guinn Williams, Lillian Elliott, H.B. Warner, Dawn O'Day (Anne Shirley).

An egostistical carnival barker who mistreats his wife and, after his death, is given a chance to return to earth to make amends. Ferenc Molnár's 1909 play has been adapted to the screen at least four times, including Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel. This is one of the best.

Frank Borzage was a top director at Fox in the 1920s, equal in stature to John Ford and F.W. Murnau. He was also one of the great romanticists of American cinema, and is especially recognized for his portrayals of young lovers enduring in the face of social upheavals and personal adversity.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 26, 1930; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Zoo in Budapest (1933) 7:30
d Rowland V. Lee. w Dan Totheroh, Louise Long, Rowland V. Lee. ph Lee Garmes. Fox. 94 min.

Loretta Young, Gene Raymond, O.P. Hegie, Wally Albright, Paul Fix, Murray Kinnell, Ruth Warren, Roy Stewart, Frances Rich.

A zookeeper with a special affinity for protecting animals falls in love with a strictly regimented orphan girl who visits the zoo. A morality tale about the ironic and cruel boundaries imposed on humans and animals.

first played at the Stanford Theatre May 31, 1933; last played Dec 2000

Liliom (1934) (3:35), 9:15
d Fritz Lang. w Robert Liebmann, Bernard Zimmer, from the play by Ferenc Molnár. ph Rudolph Maté. m Jean Lenoir, Franz Waxman. Fox. 118 min.

Charles Boyer, Madeleine Ozeray, Robert Arnoux, Roland Toutain, Alexandre Rignault, Henri Richard, Barencey, Raoul Marco.

After hurriedly leaving Nazi Germany for Paris in 1934, Fritz Lang directed this French language adaptation of Molnár's play before moving permanently to Hollywood.

Though it was not well received by critics in France, the New York Times praised the performances of Charles Boyer and Madeleine Ozeray and, near the end of his long life, Lang regarded it as one of his best films.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

December 6:
The Johnstown Flood (1926) 2:00
d Irving Cummings. w Edfrid Bingham, Robert Lord. ph George Schneiderman. Fox. 60 min (approx.

George O'Brien, Florence Gilbert, Janet Gaynor, Anders Randolf, Paul Nicholson, Paul Panzer, George Harris, Max Davidson, Walter Perry.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A drama about one of the worst flood disasters in American history, in which over 2000 people died.

Janet Gaynor gained her first important critical notices (and stardom) as the heroine who races to warn the citizens of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, of their impending doom. Great special effects.

first played at the Stanford Theatre July 24, 1926; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Seventh Heaven (1927) 3:20
d Frank Borzage. w Benjamin Glazer. ph Ernest Palmer. Fox.

Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, Ben Bard, David Butler, Marie Mosquini, Albert Gran, Gladys Brockwell, Emile Chautard, George Stone.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A Paris worker falls in love with a homeless waif in the days leading up to WW I. One of silent film's most romantic pictures.

Variety headlined its review of this film as "... a great big romantic, gripping and red-blooded story told in a straight-from-the shoulder way." This movie— the first of twelve in which they co-starred— established Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell as one of the great romantic teams in the history of American cinema. Academy Awards for Best Director, Best Actress, and for Benjamin Glazer, Best Writing (Adaptation).

first played at the Stanford Theatre Mar 13, 2009; last played Aug 2012

December 7 – 8: closed

December 9 – 10:
Pleasure Cruise (1933) 7:30
d Frank Tuttle. w Guy Bolton. ph Ernest Palmer. Fox. 72 min.

Genevieve Tobin, Roland Young, Ralph Forbes, Una O'Connor, Herbert Mundin, Minna Gombell, Theodore von Eltz, George Arthur.

A delightful pre-code comedy about a wife who decides to take a "marriage holiday" from her jealous husband and has a romantic fling during an ocean cruise. Little does she know that her husband is also on board.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

My Weakness (1933) 6:05, 8:55
d David Butler. w David Butler, B.G. DeSylva. ph Arthur C. Miller. m Arthur Lange, Cyril J. Mockridge. Fox. 73 min.

Lilian Harvey, Lew Ayres, Charles Butterwirth, Harry Langdon, Sid Silvers, Irene Bentley, Henry Travers, Adrian Rosley, Mary Howard, Irene Ware, Barbara Weeks, Susan Fleming.

A screwball romantic comedy, with a Pygmalion story line. A young man makes a bet with his rich uncle (who has cut off his income) that he can choose any young woman at random and marry her off to a man on the social register.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Oct 29, 1933; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

December 11 – 12:
The Black Camel (1931) (4:40), 7:30
d Hamilton MacFadden. w Barry Connors, Philip Klein. ph Joseph August, Daniel Clark. Fox. 71 min.

Warner Oland, Dorothy Revier, Bela Lugosi, Sally Eilers, Victor Varconi, Murray Kinnell, William Post, Jr., Robert Young, Violet Dunn, Dwight Frye, Marjorie White.

Warner Oland stars as Inspector Charlie Chan of the Honolulu police department, who is called to investigate the murder of a movie star's maid. He finds many suspects (naturally) and an unsolved murder that occurred three years earlier.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

Murder in Trinidad (1934) 6:05, 8:55
d Louis King. w Seton I. Miller, from the novel by John W. Vandercook. ph Barney McGill. Fox. 74 min.

Nigel Bruce, Heather Angel, Victor Jory, Murray Kinnell, Douglas Walton, J. Carrol Naish, Claude King, Pat Somerset, Francis Ford, Noble Johnson.

Nigel Bruce, best known for his performances as Dr. Watson in many Sherlock Holmes films, asserts his own authority in the role of an international detective on the trail of a band of murderous diamond smugglers.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Apr 26, 1934; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

December 13:
Lazybones (1925) 2:00
d Frank Borzage. w Frances Marion, from the play by Owen Davis. ph Glen MacWilliams, George Schneiderman. Fox. 80 min (approx).

Charles "Buck" Jones, Madge Bellamy, Virginia Marshall, Edythe Chapman, Leslie Fenton, Jane Novak, Emily Fitzroy, ZaSu Pitts, William Norton Bailey.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A seemingly directionless bachelor takes on the responsibility for raising the fatherless daughter of his fiancée's sister, causing a scandal among his small-town neighbors. When the man refuses to abandon the little girl at his betrothed's insistence, the woman leaves to marry another man.

Buck Jones is best remembered as one of the great cowboys of the silent film era. Under Frank Borzage's direction, Jones gives a sensitive and emotional portrayal of unrequited love and self-sacrifice.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

Street Angel (1928) 3:40
d Frank Borzage. w Phiip Kelin, Henry Roberts Symonds, Marion Orth, from the play Lady Cristallinda by Monckton Hoffe. ph Ernest Palmer, Paul Ivano. Fox. 102 min (approx).

Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, Alberto Rabagliatti, Gino Conti, Henry Armetta, Guido Trento, Louis Liggett, Milton Dickinson, Helena Herman, Natalie Kingston, David Kashner, Jennie Bruno.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A love story about a poor Italian girl on the run from the law who is taken in by a talented painter who works with a traveling circus. When she is arrested and sent to prison, her lover becomes depressed and loses interest in his art. When they are eventually reunited, the girl's honesty renews his love and his desire to paint.

One of the great American films of the late silent era and one of the best co-starring Gaynor and Farrell.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Dec 13, 2015; last played Dec 2015 first showing at the Stanford Theatre

December 14 – 15: closed

December 16 – 17:
Bad Girl (1931) 7:30
d Frank Borzage. w Edwin J. Burke, from the novel by Vina Delmar. ph Chester A. Lyons. Fox. 90 min.

Sally Eilers, James Dunn, Minna Gombell, William Pawley, Frank Darien, George Irving, Sue Borzage.

A girl from the New York tenements meets a young go-getter radio salesman. Both are skeptical of one another based on their previous experiences with the opposite sex. They fall in love, marry, and a baby is soon on the way, but the realities of life test their devotion to one another.

Recognized as one of the best films of 1931. Academy Awards for Best Director and for Edwin J. Burke, Best Writing.

"Tender and appealing... Takes precedence over 7th Heaven." New York Times

first played at the Stanford Theatre Sep 22, 1931; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

The Gay Deception (1935) 6:00, 9:10
d William Wyler. w Stephen Morehouse Avery, Don Hartman. ph Joseph Valentine. m Louis de Francesco. Fox. 77 min.

Francis Lederer, Frances Dee, Benita Hume, Alan Mowbray, Akim Tamiroff, Lennox Pawle, Adele St. Maur, Luis Alberni, Richard Carle, Lionel Stander.

A prince disguised as a bellboy in a New York hotel pursues a small-town stenographer whom he mistakenly believes is wealthy. An early display of William Wyler's talents as a director of comedy.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Sep 18, 1935; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

December 18 – 19:
State Fair (1933) (3:35), 7:30
d Henry King. w Paul Green, Sonya Levien, from the novel by Phil Stong. ph Hal Mohr. m Louis de Francesco. Fox. 99 min.

Will Rogers, Janet Gaynor, Lew Ayres, Sally Eilers, Norman Foster, Louise Dresser, Frank Craven, Victor Jory, Frank Melton, Erville Alderson, Hobart Cavanaugh.

A farmer takes his wife, son, and daughter on a week long trip to the Iowa State Fair. His mind is focused on winning the blue ribbon for his prize hog, Blue Boy, while his equally competitive wife hopes to win for her mincemeat and pickles. The daughter and son seek romance and find heartbreak.

One of Will Rogers' best remembered films was nominated for a Best Film Oscar ands elected as one of the 10 best films of 1933 by the National Board of Review.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Feb 19, 1933; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

Sunny Side Up (1929) 5:25, 9:20
d David Butler. w/m/ly Buddy G. DeSylva, Lew Brown, Ray Henderson. ph Ernest Palmer, John Schmitz. Fox. 121 min.

Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, El Brendel, Marjorie White, Sharon Lynn, Frank Richardson, Mary Forbes, Joe Brown, Alan Paull, Peter Cawthorne.

A charming musical comedy about a young society man who meets a flapper from the New York tenement district. Sunny Side Up stars the team of Gaynor and Farrell, with "story, dialogue, words and music" by De Sylva, Brown and Henderson.

The high point is the Turn on the Heat music and dance sequence which ranks as one of the most bizarre and entertaining delights of the pre-code era.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Feb 5, 1930; first showing by the Stanford Theatre Foundation

December 20:
City Girl (1930) 2:00
d F. W. Murnau. w Berthold Viertel, Marion Orth. ph Ernest Palmer. Fox. 8 reels (~77 min).

David Torrence, Edith Yorke, Dawn O'Day, Charles Farrell, Mary Duncan, Guinn "Big Boy" Williams, Dick Alexander, Tom Maguire, Jack Pennick.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A Minnesota farmer's son goes to the city to sell their wheat crop. While there, he meets and marries a waitress. When he brings her home with him, they encounter parental disapproval, jealousy, and labor strife among the hired harvesters, and a crop-threatening hailstorm.

Directed by the great F.W. Murnau, this is a pastoral film of remarkable poetic beauty, in the same vein as Sunrise.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Mar 22, 1930; last played Sep 2004

Lucky Star (1929) 3:50
d Frank Borzage. w John Hunter Booth, H.H. Caldwell, Katherine Hilliker, Sonya Levien, from the story Three Episodes in the Life of Timothy Osborn by Tristram Tupper. ph Chester A. Lyons, William Cooper Smith. Fox. 90 min (approx).

Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, Guinn "Big Boy" Williams, Paul Fix, Hedwig Reicher, Gloria Grey, Hector V. Sarno.

Dennis James at the mighty Wurlitzer.

A linesman notices a wretched young girl who lives on a poor farm with her widowed mother. Soon after, the U.S. enters WW I and the boy goes to France, where he is badly wounded, returning home in a wheelchair. He and the girl discover they are in love, but her mother rejects him because he is disabled. When another man tries to force his love on the girl and (with her mother's approval) carries her away to be married, the wounded vet makes a heroic effort to save her. Borzage, Gaynor, and Farrell at their dramatic best.

first showing at the Stanford Theatre

December 21 – 23:
"I want your opinion, your honest opinion."
The Shop Around the Corner (1940) 7:30
d Ernst Lubitsch. w Samuel Raphaelson, from the play by Nikolaus Laszlo. ph William Daniels. m Werner Heymann. MGM. 97 min.

James Stewart, Margaret Sullavan, Frank Morgan, Joseph Schildkraut, Sara Haden, Felix Bressart, William Tracy.

In the days before Christmas. a new sales clerk (Margaret Sullavan) is hired by a Budapest shop. She and the manager (Jimmy Stewart) have a stressful relationship on the job, unaware that they have been conducting a romance as pen pals who have never met in person.

"Among the greatest of films... The cafe conversation may be the best meeting in American Film." David Thomson
"One of the most beautifully acted and paced romantic comedies ever made." Pauline Kael
"Never did I make a picture in which the atmosphere and the characters were truer than in this picture." Ernst Lubitsch

first played at the Stanford Theatre Feb 4, 1940; last played Dec 2014

"We're off to see..."
The Wizard of Oz (1939) 5:35, 9:20
d Victor Fleming & King Vidor. w Noel Langley, Florence Ryerson, Edgar Allan Wolfe, from the book by L. Frank Baum. ph Harold Rosson. songs E. Y. Harburg & Harold Arlen. MGM. 102 min.

Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Jack Haley, Bert Lahr, Margaret Hamilton, Billie Burke, Charley Grapewin, Clara Blandick.

One of the most beloved films of Hollywood's Golden Age, The Wizard of Oz continues to enchant adiences more than 70 years after its premiere. You haven't really been to Oz until you've seen it on our big screen in glorious Technicolor, with an audience.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Sep 3, 1939; last played July 2014

December 24:
"All you can take with you is that which you've given away."
It's a Wonderful Life (1946) 9:00
d Frank Capra. w Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Frank Capra, based on the short story The Greatest Gift by Philip Van Doren Stern. ph Joseph Walker, Joseph Biroc. m Dimitri Tiomkin. Liberty. 130 min.

James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Henry Travers, Beulah Bondi, Frank Faylen, Ward Bond, Gloria Grahame, H. B. Warner, Frank Albertson, Samuel S. Hinds, Mary Treen.

The traditional Christmas Eve screening of what Frank Capra modestly called "the greatest movie anybody ever made." Advance tickets are recommended. Every Christmas Eve more than 1000 people watch George Bailey's Odyssey at The Stanford Theatre. It's our most important tradition.

first played at the Stanford Theatre Apr 27, 1947; last played Dec 2014