Jumat, 03 Juni 2011

Josef von Sternberg - An American Tragedy (1931)

Josef Von Sternberg's film of An American Tragedy is his only non-Dietrick movie made between The Blue Angel and The Devil is a Woman. It's a fascinating excercise in literary adaptation, faithful to a fault to the incidents from Dreiser's novel, but divergent enough in tone that Dreiser sued.

Maybe the surrealism of the cross-examination in a row-boat in court was the kind of thing the great realist objected to. Sternberg claimed that everything Dreiser pointed out as a Hollywood addition was actually present in the novel.


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