Cary, Shep, Bill, and Francis are pilots who have just, and only just, survived the First World War. They linger in Europe in the aftermath, drinking and ostensibly having fun, but ... See full summary »
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Cary, Shep, Bill, and Francis are pilots who have just, and only just, survived the First World War. They linger in Europe in the aftermath, drinking and ostensibly having fun, but pessimistic and flip about their futures, as each feels himself somehow lost and dead inside as a result of the horrors he's experienced. They encounter a beautiful and vivacious girl, Nikki, and adopt her, not romantically but as a sort of mascot and light around which they can hover in hopes of regaining a sense of warmth and life. Nikki does her best to reinvigorate her new friends, but despite the seeming lightheartedness of their escapades, the shadow of the war can never be dispelled. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Original and heart-breaking film study of lost characters.
Although the story is derivative of Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises", novelist and screenwriter John Monk Saunders brings his own style and a better plot to this study of the "Lost Generation" wandering Europe during the 1920's.
The male characters desperately cling to drinking and all-night frivolity as a means of forgetting the terror of war, and they meet a similarly lost, though full of life, alcoholic woman played superbly by the under-rated Helen Chandler. Chandler's performance is so effortless that she seems to be playing herself, a woman living an independent, wild life with an unknown reason for also wanting to forget and escape. Watch her scene with Richard Barthelmess as they have a drink at a cafe during a rain shower before visiting a cemetery, and you'll see her longingly trying to imagine a simpler, happier life.
Barthelmess provides another expert performance to the film, as one of the saner, less-hard-drinking characters who half-heartedly tries to escape from the others on several occasions, but is always drawn back because of his love and friendship for the others.
See this film if you can - it's unlike any other.
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