6.3/10
336
16 user 10 critic

The Wet Parade (1932)

Passed | | Drama, History, Romance | 26 March 1932 (USA)
The evils of alcohol before and during prohibition become evident as we see its effects on the rich Chilcote family.

Director:

Victor Fleming (uncredited)

Writers:

John Lee Mahin (adapted by) (as John L. Mahin), Upton Sinclair (from the novel by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dorothy Jordan ... Maggie May Chilcote
Lewis Stone ... Roger Chilcote
Neil Hamilton ... Roger Chilcote, Jr.
Emma Dunn ... Mrs. Chilcote
Frederick Burton ... Major Randolph
Reginald Barlow Reginald Barlow ... Judge Brandon
John Larkin ... Moses
Gertrude Howard Gertrude Howard ... Angelina
Robert Young ... Kip Tarleton
Walter Huston ... Pow Tarleton
Jimmy Durante ... Abe Shilling
Wallace Ford ... Jerry Tyler
Myrna Loy ... Eileen Pinchon
Joan Marsh ... Evelyn Fessenden
John Miljan ... Major Doleshal
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Storyline

Sprawling story of Prohibition set against two families and how they are affected by booze. The stories come together when two young people (Robert Young, Dorothy Jordan) join in a common fight against liquor because it has destroyed their families. Both pros and cons are presented, but the screenplay definitely sides with the abstainers. The fathers destroyed by demon rum are played by Walter Huston and Lewis Stone, and look for Jimmy Durante as a bearded federal agent! Written by Ed Lorusso

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"GIRLS! If You Loved a Man- would you let him risk his life for you?" Could they tear him from your arms, even to make the world a better place to live in? (Print Ad- Buffalo Courier-Express, ((Buffalo NY)) 19 April 1932)

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 March 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alcohol maldito See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's earliest documented telecast took place in Minneapolis Saturday 27 April 1957 on KMGM (Channel 9), followed by Tucson 16 August 1957 on KVOA (Channel 4), by Spokane 16 October 1957 on KHQ (Channel 6), by Norfolk VA 17 October 1957 on WTAR (Channel 3), by Portland OR 17 December 1957 on KGW (Channel 8), by Honolulu 9 December 1957 on KHVH (Channel 13), by Cincinnati 15 May 1958 on WLW-T (Channel 5), by Kalamazoo 17 May 1958 on WKZO (Channel 3), by Green Bay WI 24 June 1958 on WFRV (Channel 5), by Charlotte NC 5 September 1958 on WBTV (Channel 3) and by Durham NC 15 September 1958 on WTVD (Channel 11). Obviously avoided by sponsors because of its age, extreme length, dated theme, and pre-code story line, along with a strangely meaningless title, it was taken off the shelf only occasionally, usually in the less predominant markets. Thanks primarily to the presence of Myrna Loy in an important supporting role, today's cable TV viewers get an occasional opportunity to take another look at it on Turner Classic Movies. See more »

Goofs

The story begins in 1916, then moves to 1919, and the early 1920's, but Dorothy Jordan and Myrna Loy wear up to the minute 1932 fashions throughout. See more »

Quotes

Roger Chilcote: See here, Major Randolph, do you still cling to that outrageous custom of yours not having your champagne chilled?
Major Randolph: Wouldn't drink ice cold wine no more than I'd make love to a spinster lady. The flavor's all freezed out!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Myrna Loy (1961) See more »

Soundtracks

Viva La Company
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played in the score
See more »

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User Reviews

Prohibition: The Epic
17 December 2011 | by jimjo1216See all my reviews

This Hollywood production takes a staunch (if peculiar) anti-alcohol, pro-Prohibition stance. It condemns the exaggeratedly tragic effects of alcohol consumption, as lives are torn apart by the mere existence of the Demon Drink. The film was released while Prohibition was still law, and it preached its Dry message directly at the 1932 audience.

In a sense, THE WET PARADE (1932) does for alcohol what TELL YOUR CHILDREN (1936) does for marijuana. What sets this film apart is its compelling story and excellent cast.

The film chronicles the rise of Prohibition out of World War I and the effects of its enforcement. It's an interesting take on the subject, showing the political and moral motivations behind the Dry movement, the last-minute hoarding of booze before the Eighteenth Amendment went into effect, the rise of speakeasies and bootlegging, and the government crackdown on liquor. The government men are portrayed like secret agents in enemy territory, infiltrating speakeasies undercover and gathering evidence before a raid. Saving the public from themselves.

The movie even touches upon some of the negative consequences of Prohibition (poisonous bootleg liquor, organized crime, etc.), placing the blame not on the law, but the insatiable appetite for alcohol among deviant Americans.

The cast assembled for this Prohibition epic is impressive. The leads are second-rate (Robert Young and Dorothy Jordan), but they are joined by some A-list supporting actors like Lewis Stone, Walter Huston, Wallace Ford, Jimmy Durante, John Miljan, Neil Hamilton, and even Myrna Loy.

In hindsight, decades after the repeal of Prohibition in the U.S., it seems the filmmakers may have been a bit misguided in their didacticism, although, to be fair, the movie is based on a book. And the film was only discouraging activities which were illegal at the time.

Still, the movie's crusading stance goes a little over-the-top. There's one scene near the end where John Miljan speaks right into the camera, directing his anti-booze rant at the viewers in the theatre. A noble gesture by MGM, supporting law and order, but it's a bit silly nowadays.


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