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Trifles of Importance (1940)

Approved | | Short | 13 July 1940 (USA)
This short shows how three seemingly unimportant things can affect people. The first is how the number 7 affects a student accused of theft charges. The second segment shows that a person's... See full summary »


Basil Wrangell


John Nesbitt (screenplay), Robert Lopez (screenplay)


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Cast overview:
John Nesbitt ... Narrator (voice)


This short shows how three seemingly unimportant things can affect people. The first is how the number 7 affects a student accused of theft charges. The second segment shows that a person's doodles can reveal personality traits. The final segment shows why certain items are on men's suits, such as lapels. Written by David Glagovsky <dglagovsky@prodigy.net>

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Release Date:

13 July 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Passing Parade No. 15: Trifles of Importance See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)


Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Followed by Storm (1943) See more »

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User Reviews

One of The Passing Parade's better efforts
2 August 2008 | by jtyrolerSee all my reviews

There are three mini-episodes in this edition of John Nesbitt's "The Passing Parade". The first one has to do with the number 7 and is about a secret group at the University of Virginia that manage to clear a man's name after he was accused of theft on the campus. The young man who was actually guilty kept receiving things with the number 7, although I'm not sure how anyone would be able to plant stuff in the student's notebook without his knowledge. There was also a pair of dice glued together, the number 7 removed from his door, and a large 7 glued to the front of a newspaper the guilty student opened up. That was enough for him to confess and the falsely accused student was able to return to college.

The next mini-episode was about doodling and it's use in psychology. There's examples of doodling by Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, Robert Taylor, Lana Turner, and Mickey Rooney, plus doodles from George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The final mini-episodes is about men's clothing. The reason for slits in the back of suit jackets is from horse riding. Lapels were said to be created when a military officer in battle opened up his jacket to give him room to breathe. The reason for men keeping the bottom button of a vest undone is because a portly king unbuttoned the last button on his vest to give him more space after having lunch. The reason for the buttons on sleeves is that Frederick of Prussia saw a guard wiping his nose with his sleeve and ordered buttons on the sleeves to prevent using a sleeve for a handkerchief.

This shows up occasionally on TCM and it's worth watching.

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