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March 17, 1942 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1942-03-17

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TUESDAY; A IE'A 1; 194

Them Movies Is Sinful T hings,
Mississippi Sencuors Revead'

Edward C. Beatty Is Presidet i,

Ushers Absent
As Night Owl

Sarong-Wrapped Dottie Cannot
Compare With Old Theatre Ads

IA)SeS I li:t"11go Mkis Lamour Ain't Nothin'

Legislators Tell Sad Tales4
Of Sunday Picture Evils
In Blue laws Discussion
Gloomy Sunday is a 120-year-old
tradition in Mississippi. An 1822 blue
law still forbids Mississippians to at-
tend bearbaiting, cocktails, bullfights
and any other routine amusements of
a Sabbath. Sunday movies are taboo
-to the intensified boredom of some
110,000 soldiers training in the State.
They wander aimlessly up and down
the dead, empty streets of Missis-
sippi towns, honing for something to
do, and usually finding it only in
honky-tonks and back-street bor-
Last week the Mississippi Senate,
for the third time this session, fear-,
lessly faced the issue. The opposi-
tion thundered that a bill permitting
Sunday movies would "open the gates
of hell." Roared Senator Joe Daws of
De Kalb (pop. 866): The Pearl Har-
bor tragedy came about because sail-
ors were not at their posts. "They
were attending Sunday movies!"
This was too much for Senator
Earl Richardson of Philadelphia
(pop. 3,711). Senator Richardson
stopped his whittling, brushed the
shavings off his lap and his desk.
He snorted: "Do you know what time
Pearl Harbor was attacked? It was
about 7:15 o'clock in the morning.
That's a mighty funny time for sol-
diers or anybody else to be in the
Up rose Senator Olen C. Hull of
Lawrence (pop. 400), a lay evangelist.
He warned his colleagues that pas-
sage of the bill would mean "religious
suicide for Mississippi"; that "the
downfall of every nation so far has
;been due to two things-first, dese-
cration of the Holy Sabbath, and sec-
:ond, loss of the virtue of its woman-
hood." Members spat rich brown
Any Resemblance
4s Also Coincidental
Anything in the way of innovation
being able to get considerable rise
out of the general populace, it is ex-
-pected in these parts that waiting
lines inside and before the State The-
ater will be a common sight for somre
time to come.
A look into the future and a com-
prehension of such a possibility
,brings out the question of remedy or
alleviation of the condition. Remedy
being somewhat out of the question
,t this point, about all that remains
is to offer some suggestions for alle-
viation of the tedious aspects of wait-
ing in line for the movie. Try that
on your ouija board.

streams of tobacco juice at the shiny
brass spittoons. Senator Hull warm-
ed up. He had been summoned, he
said, "to come at once" to the home
of a friend 80 miles away. He "raced"
there in his automobile to discover
that his friend's daughter-"a beau-
tiful young woman"--had confessed
to losing her virtue. "And where do
you thing it happened? Where do
you think it happened? It took place
in a picture show!"
This was too much for white-
haired Senator Dave Crawley of Kis-
ciusko (pop. 4,291). "I don't dispute
the story," said he, "but I do observe
a picture show is a hell of a place
to lose it." After the fireworks, th
bill passed: 29-to-1.0, went to the
House, which has twice killed asii-
lar bill. The measure was strictly
class legislation, Even if the House
should pass the bill, cockfights, bull-
fights, and bearbaiting will still be
illegal in Mississippi on Sundays.
-Time Magazine
Film IHistw
Shows Effeclt
Expurgators Have Worked
Since First Experiienal'
Films Were Introdueed
Motion picture censorship is not a
new thing, but has been with us since
the first experimental films were pro-
The history of movie censorship
has origins in common with that of
literature and of the drama. Censor-
ship of the stage and of the. printed
word did not, as is commonly believ-
ed, begin with the tight puritanical
concepts of the Victorian era,
Anglo-Saxon Game
Expressions of' the principles of
that, a famous American lawyer has
called the "Anglo-Saxon Game" (ob-
scenity censorship) which was first
evident in'the late 17th century with
the publication of Jeremy Collier's
"Short View of the Immortality of
the English Stage."
During the Victorian era we added
to the English language the verb "to
bowdlerize," meaning to censor or
expurgate, from the name of the im-
mortal Thomas Bowdler who, in an
introduction to his ten volume "The
Family Shakespeare" wrote: "It cer-
tainly has been my wish, and it has
been my study to exclude from this
publication whatever is unfit to be
read alound by a gentleman to a
company of ladies." He also wanted'
to expurgate the Bible.
Motion Picture Era
The cry for censorship in the mo-
tion picture era came with the ex-
perimental motion picture produced
by Thomas Edison, "The Kiss." It
was merely a photographic record of
one kiss, but the Comstockians threw
the term "libertine at the great in-
With World War I came a great
change in the motion picture indus-
try. Technical advances had made it
possible forthe screen to adequately
reflect the times in which it lived.
Unfortunately, however, this devel-
opment had to come during the
"Roaring Twenties" when, to say the
least, there was quite a good deal to
reflect. Thus motion pictures became
"daring," "spicy," and the resulting
roars of the morality leagues, the up-
lift societies, and the churches,
brought to the foretnone otherdthan
the Hays Office that we know today.


('A)riy Kernel atins Wild;
M isses Seat, alcony
i Screeno' victory
The adventure of Cornwallis Ker-
nel is one of the strangest in the an-
nals of theatre balcony lore.
Corny, a country lad of tremen-
dous shoulders and even bigger feet,
took the afternoon off from barn-
cleaning to go to the city. Before he
left he was dutifully warned by his
boss, the other hired hands, four
horses and a sheep to stay away from
the haunts of "bad women" and city
Kernel remembered the admoni-
tions of his friends and dutifully
stayed away from the crimson paths
of temptation. Ie celebrated his day
off by going to the movies.
Golden-Haired Hero
The balcony looked inviting to our
hero of the golden hair and broad
shoulders so he went there. In the
darkness and dimness of the upstairs
all was confusion for Cornwallis.
He fell down the stairs.
Four hundred and three peanut-
eaters shouted as one: "Quiet, down
there!" Cornwallis shame-facedly
picked himself up leaving three teeth
where he fell. He looked around for
a seat but could see nothing.
After three hours and 11 minutes
of accustoming his eyes to the gloom
he saw a seat near the back. He
crawled up the difficult -tairs to the
place and sat down. He thought it
was comfortable to sit down, but hs
had no place to put his feet because
an inconsiderate old lady in front o
him objected to having them in her
lap. He sat on his feet.
Pahdon Me!
After a few moments he felt an
arm creeping around his shoulder
When he jumped a voice whispered,
"Pahdon me, I thawt youse was my
woman." Kernel looked at the sid
just in time to see the speaker mak
a pass in the other direction.
Cornwallis had had enough. He
stood up, kicked four people in the
shins and got out ,of the aisle.
He looked for an exit. He movec
toward it guiltily and fell down four
more times. But he would let nothirn
stand in his way.
He opened a door and walked into
a brightly lighted room. A mar
look edat him, sneered, told him tc
keep quiet and to get out.
Kei'nel jumped back only to fin
that his stocky legs were entwined b5
a snaky object. He became confused
fell down again and rolled to the door
which opened again.
Today only the body of Cornwalliq
Kernel is living, living in a home fo
the insane. His mind died, murderec
in the balcony.


Titles Of

. atchy

Imaginative students still whistle
and yell when they see Dorothy La-
inour swathed in romanti sarongs
and swooning 'neath tropic moons in
pictures termed 'Pagan Passion' and
matronly ladies give the expected
disapproving clucks of the tongue
and settle back to enjoy the show.
But calling these movies 'Erotic, Ex-
otic!' is sheer exaggeration when you
glance over the local theatre ads
of yesteryear.
In the 'Risque Thirties', analogue
of the 'Gay Nineties,' a show was
what they called it, and what they
called it was enough to make the
Hays Office die in its tracks. Sons'
didn't ask father embarrassing ques-
tions in those days, they just wept
to the movies. What appears in di-
luted form today as 'Mine Eyes Have
Seen the Glory' popped out red hot as
'Syrnthetic Sin.'
MmM! Mmm!
If you don't believe me glance back
at a rpllicking little number in '27
billed as 'The hilarious story of an
unmarried wife!' entitled 'Slightly
Used.' Or if you're particular, 'Find-

ers Keepers', describing 'Love in a
soldier's training camp.'
Say what you will of fraudulent
stockbrokers and imaginary gold
mines, you've gotta admit you were
never cheated in the movies. When
they had an ambiguous title, like
'Man, Woman, Sin' they came right
out and said, 'This is not a western.'
Marital advice? Why with the
I movies around it's a wonder that
cupid's little interpreters had any
business at all. Just look at these,
'Beware of Married Men,' 'What ,Ev-
ery Qirl Should Know,' 'Adam and
Evil?' 'Naked Truth' or 'Men not fit
to marry.' Pretty complete, wouldn't
you say?
Don't Blame Maw
You may have laughed at mother
checking up on where dad spent the
evening, but can you blame her with
these pictures showing? 'Why Sail-
ors Go Wrong?' 'Bare .Knees.' 'Silk
Stocking' with the short but explicit
explaination, 'Nuf Sed,' 'The Great
Necker', find 'Ladies Night in a Turk-
ish Bath.'
Well, if every mother doesn't hail
Will Hays as the savior of her childs
morals, something is wrong. But if
not, I'll bet she has a good idea what
father means when he sighs for the
good ole days.

Edward Beatty, president and treasurer of the Butterfielod Theatres
and long-time executive in the theatrical world, to whose integrity and
foresight much of the growth of the Butterfield circuit may 1U

I/le, ih

* x:

Ed~Wand Beatty Has Iavele(1
Far And Wide For Butterfield
Born in a small town in southern the United States, comprising more
Indiana, educated in the schools of than a hundred theatres, all located
in Michigan. The Butterfield Thea-
Indiana and the University of Ken- tre organization is a Michigan insti-
tucky, and during the summer tution, owned and controlled by
months touring the country in an Michigan men ... E. C. Beatty, pres-
executive capacity with 'variout tent- ident and treasurer; E. C. Shields,
ed organizations-such was the early vice-president, of Lansing; and L. E.
career of Edward C. Beatty, presi- Gordon, secretary, of Battle Creek.
dent and treasurer of W. S. Butter- A considerable part of the success
field Theatres, Inc., and the Butter- and growth of the Butterfield circuit
field Michigan Theatres Company of theatres can be attributed to the
and affiliated companies. Having de- foresight, integrity and showman-
cided upon the theatrical business as ship of Mr. Beatty, who is considered
a livelihood, he managed theatres in in amusement circles as one of the
the Blue Grass state and also was outstanding showmen in the country.
company manager of traveling legiti-
mate attractions, handling well
known stars on tour throughout the ots Lrowd s
Mr. Beatty, a thorough showman,
became first associated with the late A re N em ises
Col. W. S. Butterfield as manager of
the o1 Bijou Theatre, Bay City,
which was later remodeled and is O f M ovie als
now the Bay Theatre. He was not
in Bay City long as Colonel Butter- Audiences are funny things, and
field knew he was too good al show- made up of a great many types of
man to leave in one place and funny people. Take yourself for in-
brought him into the general office stance. Is your conduct always com-
at Battle Creek where he later be- mendable when you attend a theatre?
came general manager and secretary- Do you sit and whisper to your com-
treasurer. panion (s) and/or violently chew pop-
At the time of Colonel Butter- corn? Do you stick gum on the
field's death, Mr. Beatty was elected seats? Do you rattle paper or cello-
president and treasurer of the But- phane bags in the show? And lastly
terfield Theatres, the largest inde- and the most important do you sit in
pendently owned group of theatres in the balcony and throw your trash
~ - down on bald-headed gents seated on
the lower floor?
OldVaudevilleThis last one is undoubtedly the
worst, for the unfortunate old geezer
A ur eted ]VJwho gets a half empty bag of popcorn
cted M any unscrupulously dumped on the upper
extremity of his shiney pate has no
(Continued from Page 1) comeback. First, he wouldn't know
who to throw it back at and second-
Lamarr are on the screen, it is un- ly he could hardly throw it way up
necessary to present the local cherry where you are sitting. Is this fair?
queen or, whatever the case may be, This type of theatre menace should
on the stage to sing "The Last Rose be exterminated once and for all
of Summer." People should have a higher respect
It is to be regretted that this is no for' others.
more, but the vaudeville will go down Another favorite pastime of the
as one of the greatest and most pros- inconsiderate movie goer is his' atro-
perous eras of the show and movie cious habit of having to continually
industry. Most people will long re- munch popcorn or candy. This an-
member the old stars such as Sena- noys the rest of the audience no end.
tor Murphy, the Pat Rooneys, and If you have to eat please do it before
Mack and Moran who were billed as your movie and not during it.
the "two black crows." Another great menace to the dyed-
Some of the oldtimers have trans- in-the-wool screen fan is to have
ferred their talents to one of the some jerk sit close to him and go to
newer phases of entertainment, that great pains to explain to some of his
of radio. Some of the older gang will companions the entire show before it
remember when Fibber Magee and happens on the screen. He always
Molly were only a small time act in explains, "I saw this shown down-
the third rate theatres. town last month."

8K end our !ooI 1/14iIA
to l4e &Stae 4ii.Jealre

/rcontinou6 io uccei.

. _
. ,,

this BIG
next to the new'

III file





6!n lerlainmeni


We of Goodyear's are happy and proud to welcome
you as a new addition to the State Street business
district. Your bright and attractive building is a
cheerful challenge for all of us to "keep up appear-
ances" to the utmost, no matter how dark the times
may seem.


We feel that the opening of the
STATE THEATRE iS a fine step in
the right direction. In troubled

The New

limes like these the American
people need more lener!ilm ?en
and 'movies are the best wiy to
ive itto then.

State Theatre
is a tribute to the
Progress of State Street.
To he Owivne and Management We 1, x (tend Ow

Note to Theatre-Goers!
After the Matinee
Complete Your Afternoon
With A Delicious Snack
At Our Snack Bar .. .
Aiist Next Door to the Theatre

Goodyear's, Agents for the
Used in the New State Theatre


I iI 1

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