Live accompaniment by Music Box house organist Dennis Scott | Programmed and Co-Presented by Chicago Film Society
The flapper captured America’s imagination in the 1920s, and Hollywood gave the public what it wanted with IT (1927) and OUR DANCINNG DAUGHTERS (1928). Leave it to low-budget independent Gotham Productions to deliver the most whole-hearted endorsement of the archetype in BARE KNEES. With her modern fashion and penchant for cigarettes, Billie (Virginia Lee Corbin) sticks out from the moment she arrives in Portersville, Virginia, a marked contrast to her prim sister Jane (Jane Winton) and her district attorney husband (Forrest Stanley). Billie soon turns the sleepy town upside down with new uniforms for the women’s softball team and fresh insights into conservative hypocrisy. With no star egos to weigh down the proceedings, BARE KNEES emerges as a fleet and crisp time capsule, crammed with clever wordplay and fiery setpieces.
35mm print courtesy of the Library of Congress