Four passengers escape their bubonic plague-infested ship and land on the coast of a wild jungle. In order to reach safety they have to trek through the jungle, facing wild animals and attacks by primitive tribesmen.
Cecil B. DeMille
Jim Wyngate, an English aristocrat, comes to the American West under a cloud of suspicion for embezzlement actually committed by his cousin Lord Henry. In Wyoming, Wyngate runs afoul of ... See full summary »
Cecil B. DeMille
Angela and Bob Brooks are an upper class couple. Unfortunately, Bob is an unfaithful husband. But Angela has a plan to win back her husband's affections. An elaborate masquerade ball is to ... See full summary »
This Day And Age is a rarely seen cult classic about high school youth during the beginning of the Roosevelt years and was directed by Cecil B. DeMille. In his sound period DeMille never did stories like this, but he was not totally unfamiliar with them. His last silent film The Godless Girl involves some Christian kids and jocks muscling an atheist club in their high school because atheism equals hedonism in their's and the Victorian Cecil B. DeMille's eyes.
But there's no mistaking the gangster threat to this small town. As Prohibition is ending, the local mob is trying other rackets and is using the old protection scam under the guise of a guild for craft workers like tailors. When Harry Green refuses to knuckle under, chief enforcer Charles Bickford kills him in front of student leader Richard Cromwell. Later on a set alibi and smart lawyering by defense attorney Warner Richmond discredits Cromwell on the witness stand. After that Bickford kills another of their friends Michael Stuart who was breaking in and frames another Oscar Rudolph for the crime.
In a plot situations that was later used in the Dead End kids film Angels Wash Their Faces, several of the kids are given honorary government jobs for a day like mayor, district attorney, and judge. Using that power plus the charisma of leader Cromwell the kids from several schools unite, there's a few hundred of them giving us the crowd scenes that DeMille films all have. They kidnap Bickford and use some persuasion to get at the truth.
It wouldn't be a DeMille film without a little sex thrown in as well. Judith Allen gets the job to pique the interest of Bickford's bodyguard Bradley Page and separate him from Bickford which she does accomplish.
This Day And Age was accused of promoting fascism which charge DeMille strongly denied. But there's no doubt here that mob rule has definitely taken over this town and traditional law and order has broken down.
By the way, the real mayor of the town played by Samuel S. Hinds has a very interesting political perspective on the situation when the fertilizer hits the cooling unit. You'll have to see the film to get what I'm talking about if it's ever broadcast.
And let's hope TCM does broadcast it.
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