A Film Critic, 1914

trainSnippets 135.  It must be disheartening for those who are involved in the making of films to receive bad reviews, and this is something that has been the unhappy side effect of film making as long as films have actually existed.  A panning from a critic is not just a modern thing.  The following quote is from The Movie Pictorial from 1st October 1914, in which a correspondent complains about a couple of recent films, one of which is The Fruits of Vengeance.  This was an American production from the company Vitagraph, silent of course, and starred prolific actor Harry Temple Morey.  He appeared in nearly 200 films, but few would have heard of him today.  A repeated theme to my researches for this site is how people who were hugely famous in their day can often be all but forgotten in less than a century.

I recently viewed a film, the name of which I cannot recall. However, the idea was founded on a vision. A young girl fell in a swoon, due to some great shock, and she saw angels and many other sights that I deny are real. I wish you to take this kind of production to task. It is an insult to one’s intelligence.

I raise my protest against the “fast express” scene in the eleventh episode of “The Million Dollar Mystery”. The train moved too slowly. It must have been one of those “safety first” railways!

I saw “The Fruits of Vengeance”, which I believe, was a Vitagraph production. The story hinges on a tight-rope walker’s love for another man’s wife. That part is none of my business, because I have been married happily three times. But this is where I object: the rope is nearly cut through – it is tied to a steel beam – the rope has been in bad condition for days, but the “artist” has never thought enough of his fool neck to examine it. Now, I’d like to see any aerial performer who failed to look over his trappings before taking a chance. Besides, ropes are not tied that way. They are fastenened by block-and-tackle rigging, so that they may be tightened! If any rope walker were as careless as that one, the sooner he met death, the better.


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About Windows into History

Author of windowsintohistory.wordpress.com Co-writer on junkyardview.wordpress.com Administrator of frontiersmenhistorian.wordpress.com
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