Beyond the Classics

Beyond the Classics is a recurring column in which Emily Kubincanek highlights lesser-known old movies and examines what makes them memorable.

Browse the full archive for Beyond the Classics below

Kay Francis in Mary Stevens Md

‘Mary Stevens, M.D.’ and the Approachable Modern Woman Kay Francis

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Even as a professional working woman in a man’s world, Kay Francis was able to be the feminine, approachable gateway into evolving gender roles.

Targets 1968 movie Scope

‘Targets’ Made Modern Horror More Real and More Terrifying

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Peter Bogdanovich’s first film (and Boris Karloff’s final film) should be looked at as more than a stepping stone to greatness. It was also genre-changing.

Beyond The Rocks Silent Film

Two Silent Stars Collide in ‘Beyond the Rocks’

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100 years has passed since Gloria Swanson and Rudolph Valentino worked together, but the story of their production is still fascinating today.

Ill Be Seeing You

‘I’ll Be Seeing You’ and How Rewarding Sad Christmas Movies Can Be

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The best holiday movies take on the realistic struggles of our lives and turn them into heartwarming stories, including ‘I’ll Be Seeing You.’

The Mortal Storm James Stewart

Once Untimely, ‘The Mortal Storm’ Proves Timeless Years Later

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While critics and audiences thought it was untimely in 1940, the themes it explores have proved to be timeless as years have passed.

The Reckless Moment Joan Bennett

The Suspense of Domesticity in Max Ophüls’ ‘The Reckless Moment’

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This lesser-known film noir starring Joan Bennett depicts how overwhelming being a woman and a mother was during the mid-20th century — and within a genre usually reserved for men.

No Way Out Sidney Poitier

‘No Way Out’ and the Best of “Social Message” Film Noir

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Sidney Poitier’s first big role was also the film that finally showed America just how ugly their racist ideals really were.

The Uninvited 1944

The Original Ghostly Thrills of ‘The Uninvited’

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Everyone loves a good ghost story. You have this film to thank for their popularity in cinema today.

Madam Satan

The Flop that Ruined Musicals for Cecil B. DeMille

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We look at the 1930 film ‘Madam Satan’ — where it fails and where it accidentally succeeds.