A List of Classic Pulp Era Films

One of the joys of gaming the Pulp Era is the inspiration we can get from period films and movie serials. This list is by no means complete but it is a good place to start getting familiar with the feel of the era.


Adventure Films:


Gunga Din

The Drum

Passage to Marseilles

Manilla Calling

King Kong

The Most Dangerous Game

Tarzan series w/Johnny Weismuller

The Mummy w/ Boris Karloff

The Mr. Moto series w/Peter Lorre

Lost Horizon w/Ronald Colman

The Lost Patrol

Five Came Back

Ghosts On The Loose w/The East Side Kids

The Fallen Sparrow w/Walter Slezak

All Through The Night w/Bogart

Beat the Devil w/Bogart

The 39 Steps w/Robert Donat

The Man Who Knew Too Much ('30's version)

The Lady Vanishes w/Michael Redgrave

Treasure of the Sierra Madre

Cobra Woman w/Lon Chaney

King Solomon's Mines w/Stewart Granger

Hammer Films' The Terror of the Tongs

The 60’s Fu-Manchu series w/Christopher Lee

Hammer Films’ Mummy series

Hammer Films’ The Abominable Snowman

The Land that Time Forgot

The People that Time Forgot

Hope & Crosby’s Road Pictures

Detective & Gangster Films:


Little Caesar w/Edgar G Robinson

The Roaring Twenties w/Bogart & Cagney

White Heat w/Cagney

Angels With Dirty Faces

The Public Enemy

The Maltese Falcon

The Big Sleep

The Thin Man series

The Charlie Chan series

Sherlock Holmes series /Basil Rathbone

The Mr. Wong series /Boris Karloff


Republic Serials:


Spy Smasher

Adventures of Captain Marvel

Secret Service in Darkest Africa

The Crimson Ghost

The Masked Marvel

Drums of Fu Manchu

Daredevils of the Red Circle

Perils of Nyoka

Tiger Woman aka "Perils of the African Jungle"

Dick Tracy vs. Crime Incorporated

Mysterious Doctor Satan

Robinson Crusoe of Clipper Island

Radar Men From The Moon


Universal Serials:


Flash Gordon

Adventures of the Flying Cadets

Adventures of Smilin' Jack

The Green Hornet


Other Serials:


The Phantom Empire


Thanks to Ed Bielcik and Mike Manning for helping to assemble this list.

About the Pulp Era


Pulp Figures are primarily designed for a fictionalized historical setting I call the ‘Pulp Era’.


The pulps were entertainment magazines of the early 20th century and reached their peak of popularity in the period between the first and second world wars. These magazines introduced tough guy detective stories with famed characters like Sam Spade and Philip Marlow, occult action/adventure stories from authors such as Robert E. Howard, the creator of Conan or Sax Rohmer of Dr. Fu Manchu fame. They also introduced the jungle fantasy adventures of Tarzan of the Apes. Within the pages of the pulps you might join an expedition into distant lands in search of a lost city. You might sail an airship through a polar gateway to a pre-historic world at the center of the earth. It was an action packed world of brave heroes standing alone against sinister villains plotting world conquest, tough dames, spies and even the occasional brilliant scientist with a newly invented rocket ship. It was a brightly colored world of action packed, spine tingling adventure.

Pulp Figures'  ‘Pulp Era’ is a fuzzy, fictional period from the Great War up to the early 40’s. It’s an approach I call ‘Hollywood Historical’. If you saw the ‘Indiana Jones’ films then you should get the idea. Historical accuracy is not a priority. We are shooting for mood and flavor here; far-flung, two-gun adventure in seedy seaports, sinister spies and occult villains steeped in arcane lore, the smoke of desperate battle and grinning in the face of death.

In this world you might encounter time lost tribes of ancient Egyptians or primitive Neanderthals, rocket packs and death rays. You will most certainly encounter military forces from around the world engaged in the timeless struggle for power among the fragmenting remnants of the Colonial empires. There are archaeologists searching desperately for arcane antiquities. There are tough guy, ex-patriot adventurers out for gold and trouble. There are warlords, aviators, dragon-ladies and thieves. There are intrepid officers commanding far-flung outposts and gentlemen explorers crossing trackless wastes in the name of honor. For the unlucky there are unspeakable horrors dredged up from the moldering tombs of the forgotten past.

Bob Murch



I highly recommend this book by Pulp scholar Don Hutchison, published by Mosiac Press and available on Amazon. For a synopsis of all the important heroes and villains of the Pulp magazines you can't do better than this handy publication.