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What a delightful actor that John Bowers was! He shines in his role as the gentle minister who finds that sermons and hymns alone cannot convert an unruly, godless populace to Christianity in the cold wilderness of the Canadian Rockies. He finds he has to lead by example. David Butler, who starts off fighting with him, but who eventually respects him, is super as the friend who encourages him. For some reason he reminded me of the goofy soldier in The Big Parade with John Gilbert. Don't know why, they really didn't look much alike.
The print of The Sky Pilot that I saw was kind of jumpy and the musical accompaniment wasn't appropriate for the action, but these two faults aside, the film itself was dramatic and moving. Colleen Moore was ok, but she's never been a favorite of mine.
This is the second John Bowers film I have seen and in both this one and Lorna Doone a year later John has scenes where he is braving rapids, trying not to drown! Once more I got the willies, since he died by self-imposed drowning in real life.
I am sure he would have made an excellent character actor in talkies if only the studios had given him half a chance. Cruel Hollywood.
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