best film:  love me tonight is my solid #1 film from 1932. It’s a stylistic innovator for sure (introducing singing in the middle of a scene) and first musical masterpiece. But, it’s no stodgy “first” film that’s appreciated by scholars for simply for being the first to make an attempt at a new mode/genre. It’s well-executed, smart, directed with pace and solid affection towards the audience. It’s extremely accessible film too with a winning performance by Chevalier.

most overrated:  vampyr at #208 by the TSPDT consensus is, like many dreyer films (excluding passion of joan of arc).

most underrated:   love me tonight is way down at #573 and I don’t get it. I’m a few hundred spots higher.

gem I want to spotlight:  scarface’s opening announces howard hawks as an incredible talent behind the camera. It gob smacked me when I first saw it. It’s the best of the early 1930’s gangster pictures (little caesar, public enemy) and has an amazing performance from Muni

trends and notables:  It’s a little weak on top (M from 1931 would be the runaway#1 film here) but again we have really solid film like the mummy that can’t find a spot in the top 10.  1932 also gives us Ophuls first archiveable film along with Ozu and Cukor. You really have to applaud Von Sternberg and Lubistch. They are both on a run. This is Lubitsch’s 5th archiveable film (2 this year) in 6 years and for Von Sternberg (2 this year) it’s 7 in 6 years.

best performance male: Muni is the best actor of 1932- I could pick either his brilliant turn in scarface or his performance in my ultimate choice here which is I am a fugitive from a chaingang. It’s still Muni but Chevalier in love me tonight isn’t a bad second option.

best performance female: Miriam Hopkins is great in Lubitsch’s trouble in paradise. She’s good enough to pick over Katharine Hepburn’s first archiveable film- a bill of divorcement.


top 10

  1. Love Me Tonight
  2. Trouble in Paradise
  3. Vampyr
  4. Scarface
  5. Freaks
  6. I am Fugitive From a Chain Gang
  7. Shanghai Express
  8. Grand Hotel
  9. Liebelei
  10. Boudu Saved From Drowning


Archives, Directors, and Grades

A Bill Of Divorcement- Cukor
A Farewell To Arms- Borzage HR
Blonde Venus- Von Sternberg R
Boudu Saved From Drowning- Renoir HR
Freaks- Browning HR
Grand Hotel- Goulding HR
Horse Feathers R
I Was Born, But…- Ozu R
If I Had a Million
I’m a Fugitive From a Chain Gang- LeRoy HR
Liebelei- Ophuls HR
Love Me Tonight- Mamoulian MP
One Hour With You- Lubitsch R
Red Dust- Fleming R
Scarface- Hawks HR
Shanghai Express- Von Sternberg HR
The Island of Lost Souls HR
The Most Dangerous Game R
The Mummy R
The Old Dark House- Whale R
Trouble In Paradise- Lubitsch MS
Vampyr- Dreyer MS

*MP is Masterpiece- top 1-3 quality of the year film

MS is Must-see- top 5-6 quality of the year film

HR is Highly Recommend- top 10 quality of the year film

R is Recommend- outside the top 10 of the year quality film but still in the archives