"So, in marriage, after the first bright years, there lies a stormy and treacherous period, which, if not staunchly weathered, means darkness and disaster." LOL!
Clara Kimball Young (as Zoe Blundell) stars as a woman bored with her marriage to selfish stock-broker J. Frank Glendon (as Theo Blundell). After ten years of marriage, the restless Ms. Kimball Young is tired of being the dutiful housewife, waiting up until midnight for the workaholic Mr. Glendon. She wants to go out and have fun while she is still young and attractive. Glendon wants the traditional housewife. He also determines the couple will not have children, so they can concentrate on his career, and maximize financial success; Kimball Young is distressed by this, feeling it's against a woman's nature. Will their marriage survive?
This is the story of a decade old marriage in trouble. The Blundells quarrel over traditional husband/wife roles; with an unresolved conflict about having children contributing to the bad feelings. A huge film star, Kimball Young gives the film's finest performance - using her eyes to express emotions excessively. Glendon is okay in the thankless husband role. More interesting is Bertram Grassby (as Lenny Ferris) as the caddish man Young picks to step out with, and Helen Sullivan (as Mrs. Annerly) as the widow Glendon chooses as mistress. Mr. Grassby looks appropriately smarmy in his scenes with Young; sadly, we see no on-screen passion between any of the couples - a Kimball Young/Grassby kiss would have been delightfully creepy. Other silent players include veteran Katherine Griffith (as Mrs. Pierpont), who wants her daughter Eileen Robinson (as Ethel) to marry Grassby; Kimball Young's dad Edward M. Kimball as honorable old Peter, and Jack Livingston as gossipy Claude Roberts.
There are TWO startling events in the film "Mid-Channel" - the first occurs when Kimball Young, Glendon, and Grassby come together to sort out their relationships; the climax very nicely uses Kimball Young's desire to have children to cinematic advantage. THEN, the film postscripts that ending with an even more startling ending, which is very unexpected. You very likely will NOT guess how the film ends, finally - but the overall theme of this old silent is much more ordinary than its promise.
****** Mid-Channel (9/27/20) Harry Garson ~ Clara Kimball Young, J. Frank Glendon, Bertram Grassby
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?