Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Jan 8, 2021

A stunning episode of The Studios, Year by Year: a great year for Universal, 1934, gives us The Black Cat, the one big studio success of Edgar G. Ulmer, icon of marginal filmmaking; and James Whale’s under-discussed One More River, based on the novel by John Galsworthy. Elise concocts a reading to justify her early, confused understanding of The Black Cat as being about WWII rather than WWI. Then we continue to weave our auteur theory about Whale’s interest in women’s experience of oppression related to sexual shame. As the Year of the Code continues, two more movies that should never have gotten made: Satan worshipping, flaying old friends alive, virgin sacrifice, marital rape, striking wives with riding crops, and executing demonic cats with knives is what Universal is all about in 1934. And wait for next episode, when we tell you what the original script of Stahl’s Imitation of Life included to trigger Breen! 


Time Codes:

0h 01m 00s:            The Back Cat [dir. Edgar G. Ulmer]

0h 44m 58s:            One More River [dir. James Whale]



* Check out our Complete Upcoming Episode Schedule (now projected into 2023)

* Find Elise’s latest film piece on Billy Wilder and 1930s Romantic Comedy

*And Read lots of Elise’s Writing at Bright Wall/Dark RoomCléo, and Bright Lights.*

Follow us on Twitter at @therebuggy

Write to us at

Theme Music:

“What’s Yr Take on Cassavetes?” – Le Tigre