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Extra resources for AGEE ON FILM, volume 1, Essays and Reviews by James Agee
OVeDlber25, 1944 OF the recent movies, None however the Lonely middle so much respectably bids for appreciation, normal courtesy, or even enthusiasm; yet most commonly I most popular Meet Me in St. Louis. such a lot of its relatively lovely new and outdated tunes are sung in an updated chromium-and-glucose type which bitterly imposes on one's skill to think that the yr is 1903; and so much of its units and costumes and hues and characters are too completely waxen to belong to that or the other 12 months. certainly, this behavior of luxurious idealization heavily reduces the price even of the few scenes on which I mainly base my liking for the image; yet even as, and for that subject approximately forever, it supplies, for as soon as, anything such a lot surprisingly lovely to monitor. i cannot take into accout ever having obvious studio-sealed Technicolor greater used, and would favor rather to say 3 pictures: one during which a mom and 4 daughters, all in festal, cake-frosting white, walk throughout their garden in spring solar, so effectively photographed that the clothes all yet develop into halations; certainly one of an outstanding black horse and buggy in a brisk and resonant autumn night-an surroundings you could all yet get the temperature and cider perfume and staidly sporty erotic rigidity of; and one in every of Halloween, which i'm going to converse of later. I loved the overall purpose of the motion picture: to enable its tunes and different musical-comedy facets come as they might, and to pay attention particularly on making the well-heeled middle-class lifetime of a few adolescent and little ladies in St. Louis look so attractive so you might proportion their suffering once they are doomed to maneuver to manhattan. i have to confess i may have loved it far better nonetheless. For by means of a means of user-friendly reasoning on which I carry no patent and which, certainly, i'd be simply too satisfied 1944 • The country / 127 to work out appropriated by way of humans in a greater place to use it, i'm persuaded that this excellent simply because very actual inspiration could have been correctly served merely in share because the ladies, and the visible and emotional weather they stream in and are meant to love, themselves approached and venerated instead of flouted and more advantageous on fact. the single member of the forged who proved my childishly blunt element by way of turning it, again and again, right into a heart-piercing sword used to be the awfully bright and eloquent Margaret O'Brien; lots of her probabilities and flickers of her fulfillment hypnotize me as completely as something considering that Garbo. What she is enjoying here's nonetheless, as ordinary, correctly glossed and thinned and sweetened; yet somebody has surrounded her with an air of generosity and simplicity and notion within which she does a few of her so much pleasant paintings thus far. (I think it can be the director, Vincente Minelli, specifically if he's additionally answerable for a type of graciousness and feel of pleasure in lots of of the pictures, and infrequently of their succession, which appear to me Italian. ) Her in basic terms lovable acts, like her music and her cakewalk, or her excitement whilst she sits excessive beside a carriage driving force, be ready to combine inventory cuteness with appeal and with actual psychology; the scene during which she is lugged in together with her lip lower, screaming half-lies and gibberish, is set the main striking and complicated task of crying i've got ever visible wear.