Hell’s Angels

Screening on Film
Directed by Howard Hughes.
With Ben Lyon, James Hall, Jean Harlow.
US, 1930, 35mm, black & white, 90 min.

At the outbreak of World War I, two brothers attending Oxford leave their educational pursuits aside to join the RAF. Their competitive relationship is challenged by each man’s feelings for a morally questionable young woman, played by a pre-code Jean Harlow, who made her big break delivering her signature line: “Would you be shocked if I put on something more comfortable?” Regarded as a producer and presenter of numerous Hollywood films, Hughes went through several noted filmmakers including Howard Hawks and James Whale before taking the helm himself. The result is a compelling war drama featuring spectacular aerial dogfights and Zeppelin raids, as well as one of the costliest budgets of its time.

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