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"In the Gay Nineties New York had grown up into bustles and balloon Sleeves ... but The Bowery had grown younger, louder and more rowdy until it was known as the 'Livest Mile on the face of the globe' ... the cradle of men who were later to be famous." The scene opens in a saloon named "Nigger Joe's" ... Written by
Michael Crew <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A favourite of mine,this movie tells of two feuding New York "characters", Steve Brodie(Raft) and "Chuck" Connors(Beery),who both strive to be the "Main Guy" in the Bowery in the late Nineteenth Century.
Brodie(1863-1901) and Connors(1852-1913),were real people,though this is a heavily fictionalized account of their antics(based on a play).Brodie's legendary(did he do it?- it's still a cause of argument!),jump from the Brooklyn bridge(1886),for which he became famous,is shown here as happening around the same time as the Spanish-American war(1898).Director Walsh clearly had a great affection for the period,so beautifully recreated here,and it includes a wild rumbustious ragtime number from saloon singer Trixie Odbray(a young Pert Kelton).Raft is at his slickest as Brodie,and Beery shows again what a clever actor he was,as tough, big hearted, and at times quite touching Connors.Pretty Fay Wray is the love interest both the boys are pursuing.
Full of life and energy,"The Bowery" moves at a fast pace(unlike many early "talkies").It is not an easy movie to find,but is well worth looking out for.
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