Mary Astor in “Two Arabian Knights,” one of four mystery movies from the 1920s.
I thought it would be fun to analyze last year’s mystery movies to see if I accomplished my goal of providing variety. I generally go from week to week in picking mystery movies, so I only have a general idea of how I am doing.
Here’s how the decades stacked up:
I did better than I expected. Silents are terra incognita to many people (though one of the 1920s films — “The Last of Mrs. Cheyney” — was a talkie that was also released in a silent version), and I use an arbitrary cutoff date of 1960, though I snuck in five from 1960s and 1970s. The earliest movie was “Hell’s Hinges” (1916) and the most recent was “Zulu Dawn” (1979). You may have noticed there were 53 mystery movies, since I carried over “Earth vs. the Flying Saucers from Dec. 31, 2018.
The 1940s and 1950s tended toward film noir while the 1930s was heavy on the Pre-Codes.
Next, I’ll take a look at the mystery studios.