“The greatest story of the west ever filmed!” is what the marketing insists you, but as to be expected from the hyperbolic labelling George Stevens’s Shane carries enough in order to prove itself an entertaining ride while it lasts. Although I’ve not yet been blown away by any of Stevens’s films, he was always a filmmaker whose work has consistently remained engaging and Shane continues a long streak for him. On some count this is arguably George Stevens’s most famous film and it’s easy to see why, for it shows a beautiful portrait of the American West as occupied by a highly political environment, together with the iconic closing sequence – but I’ve found still carries another particular tendency with Stevens that has always bothered me, but that’s not to say it makes Shane any less of a great western than it is.
Continue reading →
With the current political climate it is only fitting that a film like Frank Capra’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington exists. Capra’s films have always carried a spirit that only shows the most inspiring that classic Hollywood cinema can ever reach and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is no exception to the rule for it represents patriotism in such an open embrace and more audiences are invited along. As a matter of fact, the very nature of the film is so on the nose for the time it came out, its relevance has only grown so much stronger as years have come by. Nearly eighty years have passed and not a single day has ever managed to age Mr. Smith Goes to Washington rather than make it feel younger.
Continue reading →
Howard Hawks’s Only Angels Have Wings is a national treasure. Although Howard Hawks may be a name recognized for directing classics like The Big Sleep and Rio Bravo for they still are amidst his most popular directorial efforts a personal connection comes in regards to the fairly ignored Only Angels Have Wings, which not only stands as my favourite of his films but also one of the most inventive means of toying with how we perceive romance in cinema, for if it isn’t the most spectacular of romantic melodramas to have been provided within Hollywood’s Golden Age, what is? Continue reading →