THE FATAL GLASS OF BEER (Clyde Bruckman, 1933)

Jewish comedian W.C. Fields, born William Claude Dukenfield in Philadelphia, became a star in the movies, achieving his masterpiece with The Fatal Glass of Beer, a short film signed by Clyde Bruckman, the co-director of Buster Keaton’s The General (1926). Fields plays Mr. Snavely. The scene of action is the frigid Yukon, where Mr. Snavely […]

BORDERTOWN (Archie Mayo, 1935)

It is unfair to compare Archie Mayo’s tough, atmospheric Bordertown to Raoul Walsh’s magnificent They Drive by Night (1940)—see my full piece about it filed under Hollywood Film Reviews—when in fact the latter recycles only a small portion of the former’s plot. Written by Laird Doyle and Wallace Smith from a motion-picture story by Robert […]