Block Cinema Screening, “City Streets,” 7:00 p.m. Friday, March 7 (Rouben Mamoulian, 1931, United States, 35mm, 83 minutes)
“City Streets” is a Prohibition-era table (from a story by “Maltese Falcon” author Dashiell Hammett) about Nan (Sylvia Sidney), a gangster’s stepdaughter and The Kid (Gary Cooper), a displaced cowboy working at a carnival sideshow. Nan wants The Kid to leave his small-potatoes job and join the mob so they can get married. A murder, Nan’s arrest and a lecherous mob boss stand in their way. Cooper’s early aw-shucks reserve transforms into cool-headed determination. Sidney, glamorous and spunky, is captivating in her first major role. Director Rouben Mamoulian (“Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” “The Mark of Zorro”) was one of the great innovators of early sound cinema, and his dynamic visual style is on full display in this crime film.