A great introduction to Man with a Movie Camera, which is a good example of mechanical reproduction being put to truly revolutionary ends. Benjamin approves; he had just this sort of film in mind when he celebrated the revolutionary, communist potential of industrial art.
This 1941 film stars comedy duo Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson, along with Martha Raye. As the theme music says, anything can happen and it probably will. The picture above shows the brilliant Arthur White’s Lindy Hoppers, who appear in the later stages of the film.
Messrs Olsen and Johnson have a highly successful stage show called Hellzapoppin’ and agree with a film company to transfer it to cinema. Then the film company decides to change everything “because we always do”. Things continue at breathless pace with a deliberately wobbly romantic plot and a host of visual and verbal jokes, interspersed with songs, dance routines and even synchronised swimming.
There is a surreal element to the comedy which reminds me a little of the young Spike Milligan. Verdict: crazy, but very entertaining.
-I think it’s important to point out right from the start (from a devout catholic viewpoint) how dangerous it is to mold God based on your own beliefs and not from the scripture and tradition that have been a strong foundation from the start. You also have to take into account the characterization of these so-called preachers (Leroy, Theodore, Preston). I think many Christians may look on this movie and believe that it will further make people who hate religion, hate it much more. I find this movie really instilled how we can’t blindly follow faith. How even “religious” people can have serious and dangerous flaws that prey on vulnerable persons. It’s a good reminder to not be trusting of everybody. This movie also depicts God as one who demands death (almost pagan like sacrifices) in order to answer prayers. It is certainly a horrible false depiction but nonetheless one that we have to see in order to understand how some characters (Arvin’s father, Leroy) justifies their actions.
-I liked the way this movie echoed almost as a Greek tragedy where fate plays a crucial role and every character is tied together with invisible strings each eventually leading back to Arvin. Obviously this movie was based off the novel, but the movie did a great job tying every thing together. I loved that the author of the novel was also the narrator.
-Arvin was a great role for Tom Holland, expanding himself is certainly admirable and he was a character to most certainly root for, (I basically started clapping when he shot Teagardin.)
-of course this movie is a southern gothic and it’s certainly triggering for those who can’t handle depictions of sexual abuse, pedophilia, graphic violence. Even I was nauseated by some scenes.
-overall it’s not a movie I would likely rewatch all the time, but it was a thrilling, macabre tale with a somber meloncholic end, with hope for redemption for Arvin.