Back to Nature (1936)

56 or 65 mins | Comedy | 18 September 1936

Director:

James Tinling

Cinematographer:

Daniel B. Clark

Editor:

Fred Allen

Production Designer:

Duncan Cramer

Production Company:

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

Working titles for this film were See America First and Vacation on Wheels . The opening credits to the film read "Twentieth Century-Fox presents The Jones Family in Back to Nature ." This was the third in the Jones Family series. Sources conflict concerning the release date: Fox trade advertising records list 23 Oct 1936 while MPH release charts compiled from studio information lists 18 Sep 1936. According to news items and publicity for the film, some scenes were shot at Lake Mary in the High Sierras in California. HR estimated that about 90% of the film was shot in exteriors and noted, "It is geared to cash in on the current great vogue for auto trailers." For additional information on the series consult the Series Index and See Entry for Every Saturday Night ... More Less

Working titles for this film were See America First and Vacation on Wheels . The opening credits to the film read "Twentieth Century-Fox presents The Jones Family in Back to Nature ." This was the third in the Jones Family series. Sources conflict concerning the release date: Fox trade advertising records list 23 Oct 1936 while MPH release charts compiled from studio information lists 18 Sep 1936. According to news items and publicity for the film, some scenes were shot at Lake Mary in the High Sierras in California. HR estimated that about 90% of the film was shot in exteriors and noted, "It is geared to cash in on the current great vogue for auto trailers." For additional information on the series consult the Series Index and See Entry for Every Saturday Night . More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
22 Aug 1936.
---
Daily Variety
8 Aug 36
p. 3.
Film Daily
14 Aug 36
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jun 36
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jun 36
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
15 Jul 36
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Aug 36
p. 4.
Motion Picture Herald
1 Aug 36
p. 45.
Motion Picture Herald
22 Aug 36
p. 39.
Variety
2 Sep 36
p. 21.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Cost
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Katharine Kavanaugh.
DETAILS
Series:
Alternate Titles:
See America First
Vacation on Wheels
The Jones Family in Back to Nature
Release Date:
18 September 1936
Premiere Information:
Brooklyn opening: week of 28 August 1936
Production Date:
22 June--mid July 1936
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
18 September 1936
Copyright Number:
LP6802
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Noiseless Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
56 or 65
Length(in feet):
5,160
Length(in reels):
6
Country:
United States
PCA No:
2444
SYNOPSIS

When druggist John Jones plans to give the opening address at the Neighborhood Druggists' Association convention held on the 4th of July at Crystal Lake, his family of three sons, two daughters, wife and mother, insists that they be allowed to come along and convinces him to buy a trailer for the outing. After various mishaps occur on the first day of travel, the Jones family stops for the night to set up camp. John instructs his skeptical sons, Jack and Roger, on the proper way to build a fire, but succeeds only in filling the trailer with smoke. His teen-aged daughter Bonnie climbs a tree to escape a playful bearcub, of whom she is terrified, and she is greatly relieved when a stranger, Tom Williams, pulls the cub away. Williams, who tells the family that he was left behind by his train, fixes the stove in the trailer and successfully intercedes when a deputy sheriff threatens to fine John for building a fire in a restricted area. At Crystal Lake, Williams courts Bonnie, and Jack falls for a vacationing girl named Mabel, who has a penchant for fast boats and peppy music, while John prepares his speech and his bookish adolescent daughter Lucy attempts to write a novel. After Jack and Mabel stave a rented motorboat, the owner, Mr. Sweeney, allows Jack to spade a large plot of land to pay for the repairs. Jack tricks Roger, an extremely entrepreneurly-minded adolescent, into digging the plot to find Indian arrowheads to sell. Roger, displeased, sneaks up on Jack kissing Mabel and takes their picture. When he threatens to show the photo to the ... +


When druggist John Jones plans to give the opening address at the Neighborhood Druggists' Association convention held on the 4th of July at Crystal Lake, his family of three sons, two daughters, wife and mother, insists that they be allowed to come along and convinces him to buy a trailer for the outing. After various mishaps occur on the first day of travel, the Jones family stops for the night to set up camp. John instructs his skeptical sons, Jack and Roger, on the proper way to build a fire, but succeeds only in filling the trailer with smoke. His teen-aged daughter Bonnie climbs a tree to escape a playful bearcub, of whom she is terrified, and she is greatly relieved when a stranger, Tom Williams, pulls the cub away. Williams, who tells the family that he was left behind by his train, fixes the stove in the trailer and successfully intercedes when a deputy sheriff threatens to fine John for building a fire in a restricted area. At Crystal Lake, Williams courts Bonnie, and Jack falls for a vacationing girl named Mabel, who has a penchant for fast boats and peppy music, while John prepares his speech and his bookish adolescent daughter Lucy attempts to write a novel. After Jack and Mabel stave a rented motorboat, the owner, Mr. Sweeney, allows Jack to spade a large plot of land to pay for the repairs. Jack tricks Roger, an extremely entrepreneurly-minded adolescent, into digging the plot to find Indian arrowheads to sell. Roger, displeased, sneaks up on Jack kissing Mabel and takes their picture. When he threatens to show the photo to the fellows back home, Jack is forced to agree to Roger's price for the negative. Meanwhile, a Department of Justice official comes looking for Williams, really a fugitive from the Illinois State Penitentiary named Silky Walker. After Williams tricks the unsuspecting Bonnie into leaving with him in the family car, Roger finds a typed farewell note. John, with Jack and Roger, borrows Mr. Sweeney's car, which he learns too late has no brakes, and chases Williams and Bonnie. After Bonnie threatens to jump and John, unwittingly, does not let Williams get around him, Williams stops the car and concedes defeat. The family learns that the farewell note was from Lucy's romantic manuscript, and on the trip home, after John points out that they should have nothing more to do with strangers, he nevertheless stops to pick up a lone boy hitchhiking, whose large family, hiding behind bushes, then pile into the trailer. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.