Hollywood's Victory Lap: The Films of 1940 (Paperback)
On Our Shelves Now
It is the general consensus that in the history of motion pictures, the year 1939 was undoubtedly Hollywood's greatest triumph during its Golden Era. However, much of the same winning confluence of circumstances and events that made 1939 such a monumental and productive year for Hollywood continued into 1940. Despite this fact, the overwhelming and enduring popularity of the movies of 1939 have often overshadowed the importance of cinema's superlative productions, creative strides and technical advances realized in 1940. The viewing public, as in earlier years, were given the opportunity to experience "the total movie experience" which meant that the bill consisted of at least one full length feature motion picture, and if not, than a short feature film, but always a cartoon and a serial along with upcoming attractions. Not only did the same seismic synergy of talent, artistic vision, opportunity, risk and pure luck that made 1939 such a prolific year for Hollywood continue mightily into 1940, but in a good number of instances, 1940's harvest of remarkable cinematic triumphs surpassed 1939's fabled cornucopia of celluloid treasures. As America freed itself from the shackles of economic misery, the rest of the world was struggling against the brutality and inhumanity of a world war raging in Europe, Asia and the Pacific. With this as a backdrop, millions of movie goers across the country looked for any form of escapism in their never-ending quest to forget the harsh realities of their dismal and disheartened existence. Hollywood was more than willing to satisfy this hunger, at least for a brief moment in time, by providing them with a stream of uplifting, spirited and entertaining films.