Oregon Cartoon Institute

It Was Against The Law: Mel Blanc, Prohibition and the Speakeasy Era

In News on May 21, 2011 at 5:05 pm

What: Screening Series Night 3

Where: The Secret Society
              116 NE Russell
              Portland, OR

When: Tuesday, May 24 · 7:00pm – 10:00pm

How Much: $6 suggested donation

It Was Against The Law: Mel Blanc, Prohibition and the Speakeasy Era

Mel Blanc was 12 years old when Prohibition began, an adult when it ended. This program includes cartoons, short films, and newsreel footage which brings to life the era of rolled stockings, short skirts and hip flasks. Includes Bing Crosby in The Big Broadcast  (1932), Felix the Cat in Woos Whoopee (1929), Betty Boop in Betty Boop For President (1932), and newsreel footage of bottle smashing speakeasy raids.
Clink Clink   (Soundie 1943)  Mel  Blanc sings with the Spike Jones boys about the evil of booze in pre-Prohibition America.
Woos Whoopee  1928  Felix The Cat goes on a speakeasy drunken spree while his wife waits at home.
Hearst Metrotone News  (1929 sound Newsreel) Coast Guard patrols and nabs rum runners.
The Big Broadcast ( 1932, excerpt) With Bing Crosby, identified as a speakeasy patron.
Project XX The Jazz Age (1956  Excerpt)  Television documentary with newsreel  footage of Texas Guinan and other speakeasy action.
Hell Bound (1931, Excerpt)  Clip shows speakeasy scene with Lola Lane singing while Leo Carrillo watches and guns are discretely shown.
Pathe News(1928  Silent  Newsreel )   SF Agents Destroy Booze
Hollywood and the Stars:  How to Succeed as a Gangster (1963, excerpt)  TV doc shows real speakeasy and gangster footage.  Then it shows clips from films made during Prohibition exploiting the issue.  James Cagney and  Edward G. Robinson are featured.  Joseph Cotton narrates.
The Rich Drink and get ready for the Revolution  (c1973 , Excerpt)  This clip is from a TV doc on the Depression.
Betty Boop for President  (1932)  Cartoon spoofs the political process but slyly promotes FDR and the end of Prohibition.
Murder at the Vanities (1934, excerpt)  The musical number, Cocktails for Two, which  celebrates the end of Prohibition.  This Arthur Johnston song later became Spike Jones’ greatest hit.
All films from The Nyback Collection.

7:00 PM@ Secret Society, 116 NE Russell, Portland, Oregon

Admission by donation


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