One of the nation’s leading cultural historians, Prof. Morris Dickstein will discuss the film on stage after the screening. He will sign copies of his fascinating new cultural history of America during the Great Depression, Dancing in the Dark, following the event.
Following a near-fatal car accident, a formerly cynical and corrupt president (Walter Huston) is transformed by some strange force into a crusader who will allow nothing—not even the Constitution—to stall his single-minded plan to save the country. He kicks out corrupt officials, imposes martial law, executes gangsters, and blackmails foreign nations to ante up their war debts and sign an international disarmament treaty. Proto-fascist wish fulfillment? Perhaps, but weird and seductive filmmaking nevertheless.
Gabriel Over the White House Gregory LaCava, USA, 1934; 87m