Sunday, August 03, 2008

The Front Page (1931)

Wacky goings-on at the press room of a penitentiary death-house! Non-stop banter is exhausting after 15 minutes or so. Characterizations have been left up entirely to mannerisms of actors. Oddly, the usually fascinating Edward Everett Horton comes up short in this regard even though he has been type-cast in his typical fuss-pot mode. Pat O'Brien lumps along agreeably but he is so much the Establishment Man even at this early point that it is hard to believe that he's a subversive ace reporter. Very active camera work, which is saying something given the early talky gear. DVD source was a damaged print. Adolphe Menjou is acting at a different rate than the rest of the cast - he is visibly pausing while the others race to catch up.

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