Sergei Eisenstein's much disputed film is being shown at the Fine Arts Theatre in Boston for the first time. I can not see why the critics were so partial to the director in their reviews and so annoyed with Upton Sinclair who cut two hundred thousand feet of film to a length suitable for a feature picture. After viewing the film one is convinced that the original scenario remains intact, and that the only possible reason to reprove Mr. Sinclair would be that he made the film too short.
Director Eisenstein is, without doubt, one of the cleverest directors in the world today. He transposes landscape, faces, shadows, and even emotions to the screen without resorting to artificial lighting. His plot, however, is a thin one, and his nostalgic idealism may possibly bore one. He sketchily traces the life of a peon in the Diaz regime. The rich land owners are cruel, avaricious, and they love to assault innocent poor girls. The peon was miserable; therefore he revolted, and the Mexico of today arrived. Happiness, and an impeccable army, blooming youth, and more army. A glorious consummation.
Mr. Eisenstein's much touted genius seems conspicuously absent in "Thunder Over Mexico," on more than one occasion. Time is of no account to this master. Art is art. Despite all adverse criticism, I recommend this film to you on the merits of the beautiful photography without which Eisenstein would be lost. Mexico is laid before you, beautiful at times, monotonous at others, but always fascinatingly real.