- Cinecon overview part 2: Film historian Joseph Yranski provides a brief look at several Cinecon titles, including the uncut version of the Pre-Code World War I drama The Eagle and the Hawk, starring Fredric March and Cary Grant, and the unusual silent The Home Maker, in which Alice Joyce and Clive Brook exchange traditional husband/wife roles.
Cinecon movies: Uncut Fredric March and Cary Grant World War I drama The Eagle and the Hawk among notable attractions
Note from the Editor: In this five-part article, New York City-based film historian and researcher Joseph Yranski, formerly associated with the New York Public Library’s Donnell Media Center, offers a brief overview of various movies screened at this year’s Cinecon.
Included below: The uncut version of The Eagle and the Hawk (1933), The Home Maker (1925), I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby (1940), and The 9th Guest (1934).
Held on Labor Day Weekend at the historic Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, Cinecon is a film festival chiefly devoted to decades-old, hard-to-find U.S. releases.
Uncut version of The Eagle and the Hawk (1933)
This year’s Cinecon screened the uncut version of The Eagle and the Hawk (Paramount Pictures), with the post-Production Code censored scenes restored.
A good World War I aviator picture, The Eagle and the Hawk stars Cary Grant (out of character) as a tough-as-nails gunner and Academy Award winner Fredric March* (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, 1931–32) as an ace pilot who is starting to crack from the strain of war. Carole Lombard is the mysterious woman March meets and has a one-night affair while on leave. In the uncut version, Lombard’s part runs for nearly eight minutes; in the truncated one she is seen for only two minutes.
Also in the cast: future Oscar nominee Jack Oakie (The Great Dictator, 1940), Guy Standing, and Forrester Harvey. Director: Stuart Walker (with an uncredited Mitchell Leisen handling the new aerial footage – and, reportedly, other scenes as well).
The Home Maker (1925)
Alice Joyce and Clive Brook are miserable: She is efficient but horrified by the drudgery of housework; he is bored in an underpaying, dead-end job. When he becomes immobilized after a fall, she has to get a paying job, while he stays home with their three kids. Joyce turns out to be a much better breadwinner, and Brook a much better househusband and parent.
A most unusual film, The Home Maker (Universal Pictures) is notably modern in its view of alternative families. A real rediscovered gem directed by 1910s star King Baggot (Ivanhoe).
Also in the cast: George Fawcett, Martha Mattox, Maurice Murphy, and Julie Bishop (billed as Jacqueline Wells).
I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby (1940)
A complete goofball comedy, I Can’t Give You Anything But Love, Baby (Universal Pictures) has Public Enemy no. 2 Broderick Crawford (Oscar winner for All the King’s Men, 1949) wanting to write songs, teaming up with composer Johnny Downs, and shockingly, becoming a hit songwriter.
Jessie Ralph is especially funny as the gangster’s mother while Peggy Moran, as always, is the exceedingly cute love interest. Directed by Albert S. Rogell, this sidesplitting comedy, projected on the big screen with an audience, was a huge hit.
Also in the cast: Gertrude Michael, Warren Hymer, and John Sutton.
The 9th Guest (1934)
The ultimate Art Deco murder mystery, The 9th Guest (Columbia Pictures) follows eight people who get invitations to a penthouse party where the ninth guest is … death! One by one, they are killed off. Who is the killer?
The 9th Guest is shockingly similar to Agatha Christie’s Ten Little Indians, which was published in 1939. I’d seen it before at Cinefest, but it was still a great Art Deco treat, especially with that ominous clock built into the wall.
In the cast: Donald Cook, Genevieve Tobin, and Hardie Albright. Director: Roy William Neill (who also handled another Cinecon entry, The Menace [see follow-up post]).
“Uncut The Eagle and the Hawk + Gender Roles Switched: Cinecon Movies” follow-up post:
“Uncut The Eagle and the Hawk + Gender Roles Switched: Cinecon Movies” review text © Joseph Yranski; excerpt, image captions, bullet point introduction, and notes © Alt Film Guide.
“Uncut The Eagle and the Hawk + Gender Roles Switched: Cinecon Movies” notes
Fredric March and Carole Lombard The Eagle and the Hawk movie image: Paramount Pictures.
“Uncut The Eagle and the Hawk + Gender Roles Switched: Cinecon Movies” last updated in April 2023.