By Tiffany Unscripted
To say the 1930s was a devastating decade is an understatement. The Great Depression is known as the worst economic downturns of the industrialized world, starting with a stock market crash in October 1929 that obliterated the accounts of millions of investors and created panic worldwide. It’s amazing that the entertainment industry thrived during that period.
Hollywood helped people from completely falling apart. Movies generated optimism and a sense of hope. Big bands and swing music were popular. Many of the films showcased bandleaders, such as Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, and Glenn Miller. I enjoyed compiling a list of movies of the 1930s during the Great Depression.
The life of a spoiled, southern belle named Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh) takes center stage on a fictional plantation. She survives the tragedies of the Civil War, the Reconstruction, and a love triangle with Ashley Wilkes (Leslie Howard) and Rhett Butler (Clark Gable). There’s nothing like an old-fashioned romance to take you on a journey.
It’s not difficult to see why this film was released. “There’s no place like home,” Dorothy says as she clicks her heels to take her back to the simple life in Kansas and away from the chaos known as The Land of Oz. Follow the Yellow Brick Road to Emerald City and gain new friends, a fresh start, and all your wishes granted. Escapism is what people needed and was looking for when this movie released.
Robbing the rich to give to the poor was something everyone could relate to. People lost faith in the government (the Kingdom) and needed a savior to provide. Although the parallels weren’t exact, the symbolism was there, and it resonated with people because they were feeling betrayed by their government.
A science fiction/thriller was perfect for The Great Depression. People needed an opportunity to suspend disbelief. As the stock markets crashed around them, having a movie that provided thrills was what people needed. A brilliant scientist goes mad after consuming a potion that rendered him invisible. Dr. Jack Griffin (Claude Rains) goes on a violent rampage, with the police in hot pursuit.
The Grimm Tales are not for children. They are dark, twisted, and filled with dangerous storylines. Still, parents delighted in sharing the movie during The Great Depression. The movie is Disney’s first animated feature. It has intrigue, conspiracy, and murder, something you don’t expect to see in a movie for children. Of course, parents were merely looking for movies to entertain their children. The true nature of the story was overlooked.
I hope you enjoyed my picks of movies that made history during The Great Depression. It was fun writing it. Add the movies to your queue today.
Tiffany Unscripted is the Managing Editor of Your Film Review at Occhi Magazine. She manages a small team of writers that cover all genres of movies, including writing featured articles on trending topics. In addition to writing, they cover live events, such as film premieres and screenings all across the country.
She especially enjoys the opportunity to meet emerging talent who enjoy sharing their passion, journey, challenges, and success with our readers. You can learn more about Your Film Review at OcchiMagazine.com.