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Monday, December 12

(1933, Lloyd Bacon) Busbyberkeleython: Jimmy Cagney’s high-steppin’ search through the opium dens for “Shanghai Lil” Ruby Keeler, aquatic ballet “By a Waterfall,” and a stop at the hot and horny Honeymoon Hotel. 35mm print preserved by Library of Congress. Approx. 105 mins.


“Irresistibly wonderful example of Busby Berkeley’s pinwheel choreography.”
– Pauline Kael

“Technical virtuosity!”
– The New York Times

“Three of Berkeley’s best numbers back-to-back!”
– Frank Miller,

“Just as Cagney is able to infuse the whole film with pedal-to-the-metal energy through sheer charisma, so is Berkeley able to momentarily silence criticisms—of political incorrectness (this is pre-Code 1930s, after all), of racial insensitivity, of sexism—through his taste for astonishing visual extravagance and exhilarating “can-you-top-this” chutzpah. Rarely has such artistic obsessiveness been made so damn irresistible.”
- Kenji Fujishima, Brooklyn Magazine 

Film Forum