Your Guide to Classic Movie Theater Filmgoing!
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Step back in time to see what area movie theaters were presenting in May 1932. Film titles are linked to the Internet Movie Database.
"Of all the fools fooling these days, few fools can fool like these fools fool," wrote Allison Ind of The Ann Arbor Daily News about the Michigan Theater appearance of Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey in Girl Crazy. Also at the Michigan was Tarzan the Ape Man, which Ind said was "all right for anyone whose sensitivities are not overly jolted by gore and primitive living and equally primitive death, whether he be a small child, an adolescent or an adult."
Michigan visitors on Monday, May 23 enjoyed the feature attraction Letty Lynton, starring Joan Crawford, and the Guest Night bonus picture, Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise), with Greta Garbo. At a Saturday morning children's show, kids were treated to Jackie Cooper in the movie Sooky and live entertainment by young tap dancing pupils from Ypsilanti. Adults saw Ricardo Cortez and Irene Dunne in Symphony of Six Million ("Fannie Hurst's mightiest story of the mad metropolis").
Also in Ann Arbor, the Whitney experimented with art films, including G.W. Pabst's Comrades of 1918, shown in co-operation with the Little Cinema in Detroit, where this film had a successful run (The Ann Arbor Daily News, May 5, 1932). And the new "Happy Quarter" policy at the Michigan, Majestic and Wuerth theaters allowed patrons to enter for 25 cents each day before 2 p.m.
At the Redford, Laurel and Hardy starred in the Oscar-winning short subject The Music Box, which opened for the feature Dancers in the Dark, with Jack Oakie. Clark Gable pulled crowds in for Polly of the Circus (with Marion Davies). Other popular films included Strangers in Love (Frederic March and Stuart Erwin); The Miracle Man (Sylvia Sidney and Chester Morris); and Ernst Lubitsch's One Hour with You (Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald).
In downtown Detroit, Grand Hotel opened on May 8 at the Wilson Theatre to packed houses paying up to $1.50 for reserved seats. Two days earlier, the cult classic Freaks opened at the Paramount. "Those who are not too particular about the manner in which they get their thrills may find 'Freaks' interesting," wrote James S. Pooler in The Detroit Free Press (May 9, 1932).
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Last updated March 22, 2015.
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