Streaming: the best Hollywood golden age classics now on iPlayer

The BBC has snapped up 23 gems from the Rko vaults, from Fred and Ginger to salty romcoms and rousing westernsMany a friend and family member has told me they’re watching more classic cinema than usual in lockdown, and not just because they’ve binged every bit of new content Netflix has to offer.

Nostalgia, however rosy and selective, is all the more inviting when present-day reality has so little comfort to offer.

In spite of this drawcard, the selection of films made before, say, 1970 on most streaming outlets remains spotty at best.Which is why the BBC iPlayer’s recent acquisition of 23 films from the vault of Rko Pictures – one of Hollywood’s “Big Five” studios in the golden age, bankrupted by the 1960s – has been received with palpable excitement.

Suddenly I find enthusiastic responses to the likes of The Magnificent Ambersons and King Kong popping up all

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