Friday, June 01, 2007

Mildred Piercing

In my post on Eleanor Parker, I said I hadn't seen her version of Of Human Bondage. But "Canadian Ken" has seen it, and he has a lot of interesting things to say in its defense.

This Mildred’s apocalyptic trashing of Philip’s apartment plays out with a fury no other Mildred has matched. She’s scary, mean and damaged – and Parker’s not afraid to show it all. Blunt and complex at the same time – a Hollywood harbinger of neo-realistic intensity. A tragic scrap-heap monster – and, in her way, just as worthy of sympathy as Philip. Entirely too complicated a creation for 1946 audiences to digest. They didn’t. And Parker went without the acclaim (and Oscar nomination) she clearly deserved.

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