Archive for September 4, 2011

The Sunday Intertitle: La Rue Debut

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , on September 4, 2011 by dcairns

What might be Jack La Rue’s first screen appearance, in THE KING ON MAIN STREET, directed by Monta Bell.

Ruritanian monarch Adolph Menjou strides into a swank hotel, causing public celebration. Heroine Bessie Love intends to throw a bouquet, but in the excitement she confuses left and right and hurls the cream bun in her other hand.

Gangster-to-be Jack La Rue plays an outraged courtier. Of course, he wasn’t ALWAYS cast as depraved gangster types, but this is about as far from the principle of “start as you mean to go on” as you can get. The movie itself is perfectly innocuous, but JLR is even more unthreatening than his surroundings. He’s obviously an earnest, naive young man who takes things seriously — in about five seconds he’s established a character as deep as any in the film.

Here’s a fine piece at The Chiseler by Imogen Smith celebrating Jack’s more usual mode. Wish I’d written that!