Pete Smith, a lift bridge operator in a harbor, feels lonely in his cabin, his only visitor being a policeman on patrol, Sgt. Coughlin. One night, after hearing shots, Smith gives shelter ... See full summary »
This first cinematic version of the classic book is a part-talkie, although the only surviving print is silent (housed in the George Eastman House, Rochester, NY). It is a straight-forward telling of the intermingled lives of a group of strangers doomed to die in a collapsing bridge accident. The Art Direction, paltry and unremarkable, surprisingly won an Oscar over the far more remarkable work nominated in THE IRON MASK. The special effect scene of the lovers plummeting with the bridge into the chasm is unforgettable and remarkbly done.
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