Best Romance Movies of 1939
Gone with the Wind
The spoiled daughter of a well-to-do plantation owner is forced to use every means at her disposal to claw her way out of poverty, following Maj. Gen. William Sherman's destructive "March to the Sea,” during the American Civil War.
A stern Russian woman sent to Paris on official business finds herself attracted to a man who represents everything she is supposed to detest.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Paris, France, 1482. Frollo, Chief Justice of benevolent King Louis XI, gets infatuated by the beauty of Esmeralda, a gypsy young girl. The hunchback Quasimodo, Frollo's protege and bell-ringer of Notre Dame, lives in peace among the bells in the heights of the immense cathedral until he is involved by the twisted magistrate in his malicious plans to free himself from Esmeralda's alleged spell, which he believes to be the devil's work.
Only Angels Have Wings
Geoff Carter is the head of a crumbling air freight service in desperate need of a replacement pilot. He is forced to hire a descredited aviator who arrives with his wife, Carter's ex-lover. Meanwhile, traveler Bonnie Lee tries to get close to the emotionally closed-off Carter.
The Earnshaws are Yorkshire farmers during the early 19th Century. One day, Mr. Earnshaw returns from a trip to the city, bringing with him a ragged little boy called Heathcliff. Earnshaw's son, Hindley, resents the child, but Heathcliff becomes companion and soulmate to Hindley's sister, Catherine. After her parents die, Cathy and Heathcliff grow up wild and free on the moors and despite the continued enmity between Hindley and Heathcliff they're happy -- until Cathy meets Edgar Linton, the son of a wealthy neighbor.
Goodbye, Mr. Chips
A shy British teacher looks back nostalgically at his long career, taking note of the people who touched his life.
Socialite Judith Traherne lives a lavish but emotionally empty life. Riding horses is one of her few joys, and her stable master is secretly in love with her. Told she has a brain tumor by her doctor, Frederick Steele, Judith becomes distraught. After she decides to have surgery to remove the tumor, Judith realizes she is in love with Dr. Steele, but more troubling medical news may sabotage her new relationship, and her second chance at life.
An unemployed showgirl poses as Hungarian royalty to infiltrate Parisian society.
Another Thin Man
Not even the joys of parenthood can stop married sleuths Nick and Nora Charles from investigating a murder on a Long Island estate.
When linguistics professor Henry Higgins boasts that he can pass off Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle as a princess with only six months' training, Colonel George Pickering takes him up on the bet. Eliza moves into Higgins's home and begins her rigorous training after the professor comes to a financial agreement with her dustman father, Alfred. But the plucky young woman is not the only one undergoing a transformation.
The Four Feathers
A disgraced officer risks his life to help his childhood friends in battle.
French playboy Michel Marnet and American Terry McKay fall in love during the transatlantic passage of a ship. They arrange to reunite six months later, if neither has changed their mind.
Polly Parrish, a clerk at Merlin's Department Store, is mistakenly presumed to be the mother of a foundling. Outraged at Polly's unmotherly conduct, David Merlin becomes determined to keep the single woman and "her" baby together.
In Name Only
A wealthy man falls for a widow but is locked into a loveless marriage with a woman who has contrived to convince his parents she is the ideal wife.
The Man in the Iron Mask
Tyrannical King Louis XIV learns that he has an identical twin brother, Philippe, who was raised from birth by his late father's trusted friend D'Artagnan and his faithful musketeers, Porthos, Athos and Aramis. After Philippe falls for the king's betrothed, Spanish Princess Maria Theresa, Louis imprisons him, forcing his brother to don an iron mask that will slowly suffocate him -- and it's up to D'Artagnan to rescue him.
The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle
In 1911, minor stage comic, Vernon Castle meets the stage-struck Irene Foote. A few misadventures later, they marry and then abandon comedy to attempt a dancing career together. While they're performing in Paris, an agent sees them rehearse and starts them on their brilliant career as the world's foremost ballroom dancers. However, at the height of their fame, World War I begins.
5th Ave Girl
A wealthy man hires a poor girl to play his mistress in order to get more attention from his neglectful family.
Drums Along the Mohawk
Albany, New York, 1776. After marrying, Gil and Lana travel north to settle on a small farm in the Mohawk River Valley, but soon their growing prosperity and happiness are threatened by the sinister sound of drums that announce dark times of revolution and war.
Despite his talent as a musician, a city boy decides to become a boxer. He's successful as a fighter -- much to the dismay of his parents. When gangsters try to by a piece of him he begins to have second thoughts.
It's a Wonderful World
Detective Guy Johnson's client, Willie Heywood, is framed for murder. While Guy hides him so he can catch the real killer, both of them are nabbed by the police, tried, convicted and sentenced to jail: Guy for a year with Willie to be executed. On the way to jail, Guy comes across a clue and escapes from the police.
The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex
This period drama frames the tumultuous affair between Queen Elizabeth I and the man who would be King of England.
The newly-named emperor Maximilian and his wife Carlota arrive in Mexico to face popular sentiment favoring Benito Juárez and democracy.
Intermezzo: A Love Story
A concert violinist becomes charmed with his daughter's talented piano teacher. When he invites her to go on tour with him, they make beautiful music away from the concert hall as well. He soon leaves his wife so the two can go off together.
The Rains Came
Indian aristocrat Rama Safti returns from medical training in the U.S. to give his life to the poor folk of Ranchipur. Lady Edwina and her drunken artist ex-lover Tom Ransome get in the way, but everyone shapes up when faced by earthquake, flooding, and plague.
King of the Underworld
After the killing of her husband by friendly fire during a police raid, Dr. Carole Nelson tries to find gangster Joe Gurney to clear her name with the medical board.
Made for Each Other
A couple struggle to find happiness after a whirlwind courtship.
Some Like It Hot
Nicky Nelson is a fast-talking sideshow barker with a wax-and-alive concession on Atlantic City's boardwalk. Even with the band of his friend, struggling musician Gene Krupa, playing on the sidewalk to attract the customers, "The Living Corpse" and other low-rent acts aren't enough to lure the seen-it-all boardwalk strollers, and the landlord closes the show in lieu of never-paid rent. Nicky, always promoting, goes to Stephen Hanratty, head of the pier's Dance Pavilion, to plug Krupa's band as an attraction, but Hanratty won't even listen to them. But, while there, he meets singer Lily Racquel, who knows he is a phoney but might have the ability to to talk a radio-station manager into giving her an audition. She gives him a ring to help finance the project; he promptly loses it in a crap-game.
In this reworking of Cinderella, orphaned Connie Harding is sent to live with her rich aunt and uncle after graduating from boarding school. She's hardly received with open arms, especially by her snobby cousin Barbara. When the entire family is invited to a major social ball, Barbara sees to it that Connie is forced to stay home. With the aid of her uncle, who acts as her fairy godfather, Connie makes it to the ball and meets her Prince Charming in Ted Drake, her cousin's boyfriend.
After discovering his star dancer is expecting and can't perform, film producer H.W. Workman and his publicist concoct a scheme to stage a college dance contest to find a new star.
Three Smart Girls Grow Up
Three sisters who believe life is going to be easy, now that their parents are back together, until one sister falls in love with another's fiancé, and the youngest sister plays matchmaker.
When a young wife discovers her husband of two years is involved with his beautiful secretary, she applies for a job as secretary to a business rival.
Andy Hardy Gets Spring Fever
Young Andy develops a crush on his drama teacher. When his play is chosen as the school's annual production, Andy seizes the opportunity to spend as much time as possible with his pretty teacher. Meanwhile, Judge Hardy has his own problems when he gets conned into forming a phony aluminum corporation.
The Lady and the Mob
Hattie Leonard sets out to break a criminal gang controlling the dry cleaning business.
In a mythical Japan, Ko-Ko, a cheap tailor, has been appointed Lord High Executioner and must find someone to execute before the arrival of the ruling Mikado. He lights upon Nanki-Poo, a strolling minstrel who loves the beautiful Yum-Yum. But Yum-Yum is also loved by Ko-Ko, and Nanki-Poo, seeing no hope for his love, considers suicide. Ko-Ko offers to solve both their problems by executing Nanki-Poo, and an agreement is reached whereby Ko-Ko will allow Nanki-Poo to marry Yum-Yum for one month, at the end of which Nanki-Poo will be executed, in time for the arrival of the Mikado. But what Ko-Ko doesn't know is that Nanki-Poo is the son of the Mikado and has run away to avoid a betrothal to an old harridan named Katisha. The arrival of the Mikado brings all the threads of the tale together
The Monroe Doctrine
The story of President Monroe's response to attempts by Spain to interfere in South America.
Movie star Brooks Mason tries to avoid his fans and spend some weeks on vacation. When Hawaiian plantage-owner George Smith is mistaken by Mason's fans for Mason and brought to Mason's home. They decide to change their identities for a few weeks. But George Smith is mobbed by Mason's fans again on a personal appearance tour in New York, Mason falls in love to dancer Dorothy March, who also is on her way to Hawaii. Problems for Mason arise due to the fact that Smith is engaged with Cecilia Grayson, and her wealthy father believes, that Smith has double-crossed him. Mason isn't able to establish a connection with Smith in New York due to his agent's orders.
A divorced glamour girl keeps warm with a professor amid sports and romance at Dartmouth College's Winter Carnival.
A tugboat captain serves under his rival as a U-boat chaser in World War I.
Honeymoon in Bali
Bill Burnett, a resident of Bali, visits New York City, meets and falls in love with Gail Allen, the successful manager of a Fifth Avenue shop, who is determined to remain free and independent. Bill proposes, Gail declines and Bill goes home to Bali. But a young girl, Rosie, and Tony the Window Cleaner, who dispels advice on every floor, soon have Gail thinking maybe she was a bit hasty with her no to Bill's proposal. Ere long she discovers that she does love Bill and can't live without him. She goes down to Bali to give him the good news. He learns that he is soon to marry Noel Van Ness. She goes back to New York City.
Nan Masters, a single mother living with her four marriageable daughters, plans to marry Sam Sloane, businessman. Out of the blue her 1st husband Jim returns after deserting the family 20 years earlier. The worldly wanderer Jim gets a cool family reception at first but his warm personality gradually wins the affections of his four daughters. In fact, youngest daughter Buff, who has her eye on a maverick of her own in Gabriel Lopez, is pleased when Jim grants his stamp of approval on her relationship. Buff plans to elope with Gabriel on her mother's wedding day, but 'unpredictable' is Gabriel's middle name.
Beauty for the Asking
Denny breaks up with his fiancée Jean to marries wealthy Flora. When Jean is fired from her job she decides to market the face cream she invented. After sending it to twelve rich woman, only Flora decides to invest in the business. As Denny has no job, the girls give him an office at the factory. The business takes off, but Jean finds that she is still in love with Denny and Denny seems to forget he is married to Flora.
A pampered heiress (Madeleine Carroll) elopes with a shipboard reporter (Fred MacMurray) just to get her name in a society column.
Man about town and First Class cricketer A.J. Raffles keeps himself solvent with daring robberies. Meeting Gwen from his schooldays and falling in love all over again, he spends the weekend with her parents, Lord and Lady Melrose. A necklace presents an irresistible temptation, but also in attendance is Scotland Yard's finest, finally on the trail.
Within the Law
A wrongly convicted woman studies law and seeks her revenge.
Ealing comedy starring music hall star George Formby. An eager newspaper reporter (Formby) goes undercover to expose a gang of counterfeiters. Posing as a wrestler and waiter in his investigative efforts, George proves a greater menace to public order than the criminals he is chasing.
The Mad Empress
The Mad Empress is a 1939 American historical drama film depicting the 3-year reign of Maximilian I of Mexico and his struggles against Benito Juarez.
Stand Up and Fight
A southern aristocrat clashes with a driver transporting stolen slaves to freedom.
The Saint Strikes Back
Suave private detective Simon "The Saint" Templar arrives in San Francisco and meets Val, a woman whose police inspector father killed himself after being accused of corruption and dismissed from the force. Convinced of the man's innocence, Templar takes it upon himself to vindicate the memory of Val's father. To do so he must take on the city's most dangerous criminal gang, while also battling hostile members of the police department.
Yes, My Darling Daughter
Ellen is a free spirited young woman in love with Doug. Sadly he must leave America for a two year job in Belgium. Ellen and Doug decide to spend their last weekend together in a tourist cabin at a rural lake. Her family is shocked that a young unmarried woman would engage in such amoral activity. The comic plot develops as Ellen argues her case for women's freedom and independence, trying to win over her mother, grandmother, and other dubious relatives.
Let Freedom Ring
A Harvard man fights a railroad baron with a disguise and the power of the press.