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Body and Soul (1925)

Not Rated | | Drama | 9 November 1925 (USA)
A minister is malevolent and sinister behind his righteous facade. He consorts with, and later extorts from, the owner of a gambling house, and betrays an honest girl, eventually driving ... See full summary »

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Marshall Rogers ...
Speakeasy Proprietor (as Marshall Rodgers)
Lawrence Chenault ...
Yello-Curley' Hinds - the Phony Reverend's Former Jailmate
Chester A. Alexander ...
Deacon Simpkins - a Church Elder
Walter Cornick ...
Brother Amos - a Church Elder
Lillian Johnson ...
'Sis' Caline - a Pious Lady
Madame Robinson ...
'Sis' Lucy - a Pious Lady
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Storyline

A minister is malevolent and sinister behind his righteous facade. He consorts with, and later extorts from, the owner of a gambling house, and betrays an honest girl, eventually driving them both to ruin. Written by Martin H. Booda <booda@datasync.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 November 1925 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

En cuerpo y alma  »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The board censors initially had strong objections to the dark and sinister portrayal of a man of the cloth. But with no money left for reshoots, producer Oscar Micheaux shot a quick ending which makes most of the film's action a dream of the heroine's. See more »

Connections

Featured in Black Shadows on the Silver Screen (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Wishing for a director's cut
6 June 2005 | by (Columbia, Maryland) – See all my reviews

Of course, we will never have a chance to see a director's cut of Body and Soul. Were that possible, then we would certainly see a completely different movie.

Many of the obvious flaws in the film were due to Oscar Micheaux's difficulties in getting the production past the censors. Despite the fact that the convict is acting as a minister, the act of showing one in a minister's robes drinking was too much for the time.

Today it would be a matter of getting several million dollars from the studio and re-shooting sections of the movie. Oscar Micheaux did not have this luxury. This meant that he had to use the little money available to him to change a completely unacceptable movie into one that would help pay the bills.

The only way to do this was to add an ending that corrected everything, and cut the sections of drinking, which happened to be crucial to the story. This resulted not only in a lack of explanation for the story and very clumsy movements from one scene to the next.

The drinking scenes have been replaced, which lengthens the film to eight of its original nine reels. This certainly helps, but the alternative ending remains. I am thinking that the director's cut would not have included this and Oscar Micheaux would have a much better movie.

Of course, Paul Robeson drives this movie (his only silent appearance), and moviegoers now know of his brilliant voice. Sans this, his penetrating eyes showed the emotion that must have matched his stage performances, which makes this a movie that can be recommended.


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