Monday, March 8, 2010

365 Movies: An American Tragedy Review

An American Tragedy stars Phillips Holmes, Sylvia Sidney, and Frances Dee in this 1931 film. The film is the original "A Place in the Sun"(1951) but with some changes to it. In the 1951 version, the film begins with a mystery surrounding George Eastman, while in the 1931 version, you find out, why he left town and you get a glimpse into how he starts into his Uncle's business. Just like in the '51 version, Clyde Griffiths(Holmes) goes to his Uncle for employment, where through that, he meets two women. A shy lower class girl named Roberta Alden(Sidney) who loves him unconditionally, even though he loves Sondra Finchley, a socialite(Dee). Complications arise, when Roberta discovers she's pregnant and wants to be married to Clyde as soon as possible but Clyde doesn't want to be tied down to her. He loves Sondra but he wants Roberta out of his life. The 1951 version is far superior to this version! Although I thought Phillips was pretty good in the movie, I much more prefer watching Montgomery Clift as the character. He embodies the character moreso than Holmes. The film is good but can be awfully slow and it doesn't have the same anticipation that the 51' version had. I honestly thought Frances Dee as the socialite was a little strange, as well as Sylvia Sidney as the homely girl. Sure, Sylvia can play shy and sweet, but I didn't really think the role fit her well in this movie.

Review for Tomorrow: The Brothers Warner

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