7.3/10
55
4 user 4 critic

The Barker (1928)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Lou
...
Carrie
...
Sylvia Ashton ...
Ma Benson
...
Hap Spissel
S.S. Simon ...
Col. Gowdy
One-Eye Connelly
...
Stuttering Spieler
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Storyline

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Taglines:

THE MOST TALKED ABOUT TALKING PICTURE TO DATE...PRAISED BY PRESS AND PUBLIC AS THE PERFECT UNION OF "VOICE AND VISION!" (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 December 1928 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Det farende Folk  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (UCLA Film and Television Archive Print)

Sound Mix:

(Vitaphone) (talking sequences)| (alternate version)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Vitaphone production reels #2931-2929 See more »

Connections

Version of Hoopla (1933) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hey Rube!
13 August 2009 | by (Ramsey, NJ) – See all my reviews

Didn't think I would like this one as much as I did. I don't really care for circus/carnival movies, although I thoroughly enjoyed "Nightmare Alley" and didn't think it could be topped. So I was pleasantly surprised by "The Barker", an earthy, sweaty character study of a troupe of traveling 'carnys'.

An even bigger surprise was the towering performance of Milton Sills, a name I had only heard in movie reference books. His portrayal of Nifty Miller, a world-weary, morally unstable carnival barker nearly knocked me to the ground, to coin a phrase. His libidinous, self-indulgent world comes to a screeching halt with the arrival of his son,Chris, played by Douglas Fairbanks,Jr. who promptly falls in love with Bimbo-With-a-Heart Dorothy Mackaill. Naturally,complications arise but the whole movie comes to life when Sills, who as a reader above mentioned, looks like a slim Walter Matthau, is on the screen.

This is a very unusual film in that it is part sound and part silent. I found it jarring to go from 'talkie'to dialogue cards without warning but I have since learned that the UCLA film Dept. has restored this 'part-talkie', and that most others of this kind have been lost entirely. In fact, The last few feet of the film were lost and a still shot has been put in its place while the sound continues. Also, unless I miss my guess, that is Herman Mankiewicz himself, who has a writer credit on this film, playing a ukelele in the trio accompanying Betty Compson in her Hawaiian dance numbers. Could be a Hollywood 'inside joke'.

This one may be tough to come by but if you get the opportunity, don't miss it.


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