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The Moviegoer

"Ah Wilderness" Portrays Family of 1906 Most Amusingly--Colbert the Same


Although the local papers made quite a stir about the filming of "Ah Wilderness" in Grafton last spring, the finished product just moves quietly across the screen as the most perfect portrayal of family life we have seen.

Lionel Barrymore as the small town editor and head of a normal family is at least as good as he has been in character parts and his supporting cast is equally fine. Wallace Berry is the delightful, warm hearted semi - alcoholic who has asked Aline MacMahon to marry him for 18 years; only in vain, unfortunately, because in spite of her love for him, she cannot forgive his trip to New York those many years before and his wicked female companions while there.

The juveniles are the real center of interest, however, and the lead is capably done by Eric Linden as the valedictorian of his class who is really a fine boy but somewhat carried off through reading Swinburne, Wilde, and George Bernard Shaw. Cecillia Parker is the sweetheart who promises to remember him even after he has gone away to Yale.

We have a struggle to criticize a Claudette Colbert picture rationally. She certainly has something we like to see but "The Bride Comes Home" runs in the same rut of he-man conquering little lady despite wealthy opposition. Colbert can act, as well as show off well, and it is unfortunate that her talents, and the more limited ones of Fred MacMurray are not allowed to wander into different roles. It would, perhaps be better if they were separated for a change.

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