Saturday, July 18, 2009
'heros for sale'
what a film title. i really love early talkies. not only are the faces incredible but there is so much to learn from the stories that take place during the depression. it was such an extreme time and one can benefit greatly by observing portrayals of both the rich and the poor. it is not about seeing one suffer and the other succeed, it is simply seeing how individuals deal with their circumstances. as my cousin taught me, 'in the material world one's consciousness is either raised or lowered.' the power of characterization is magnified by great actors under the direction of a master.
william wellman directed 'heros for sale' in 1933. it stars richard barthelmess, (who actress lillian gish claimed was the best looking man she'd ever seen), loretta young, and aline macmahon. it is painfully good. you will lament when you see the bad stuff coming. even when it doesn't always come you know there's more ahead. the performances are soulful and the character of the hero of the title is someone you will be happy to enlist as a role model. good role models are always needed.
photos: richard barthelmess/lotetta young/aline macmahon.