Notable as the only film on which Scott Fitzgerald received a script credit, although his conception was softened by some pussyfooting around the crucial Atwill character. So what begins as a 'lost generation' tale as the three comrades (Taylor, Tone and Young) return home to Germany after the 1918 armistice, flaunting the familiar mixture of cynicism and idealism as they pursue fun and fast cars while trying to set about the task of rebuilding their lives, soon becomes sidetracked as Fitzgerald's pessimism runs into Borzage's romanticism. No question here that Sullavan's ethereal heroine, though penniless, jobless, and suffering from malnutrition which turns into terminal TB, will have any seriously sordid truck with the proto-Nazi sugar-daddy played by Atwill. Instead, the film exercises a little sleight-of-hand and, still trailing wisps of Fitzgerald's conception, takes off with Sullavan and Taylor into one of those incandescent Borzage romances where time is simply non- existent: impossibly pure, absurdly naïve, yet magically tender.
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