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In Youth, Beside the Lonely Sea (1925)

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Thomas Bailey Aldrich's poem is dramatized in triptych. In the center panel, a young man muses on the seashore where mermaids beckon, the he walks through the woods, accompanies by ... See full summary »
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Thomas Bailey Aldrich's poem is dramatized in triptych. In the center panel, a young man muses on the seashore where mermaids beckon, the he walks through the woods, accompanies by Titania's fairy brood. He's then shown as a grown man, walking a city street where temptation and dissolution teem. Those images from his youth keep him away from sin. Then, alone in a bed sit, we see him old, with a bottle, despair, and fading memories. The fairies try a last visit. The words of Aldrich's poem appear above and below the triptych. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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1.33 : 1
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Interesting Film Worth Viewing
1 May 2011 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

In Youth, Beside the Lonely Sea (1925)

** 1/2 (out of 4)

The makers of this short are unknown to this day, which is a shame because the vision on screen is certainly something special and it's worth noting that this "widescreen" film was made a few years before Abel Gance's NAPOLEON. Thomas Bailey Aldrich's poem is brought to the screen with a special process, which is basically a widescreen format created by using three different frames, cutting off the top portion of the picture and placing the three frames side by side. This here gives the film a widescreen look and the makers also use this to tell the story. Often the man can be seen in the middle frame while his "visions" can be spotted in the outer two frames. The widescreen process here isn't a complete success but at the same time you have to tip your hat to the filmmakers for at least trying something different. There are times when the two outer frames don't match up completely with the middle one but I think it would be unfair for someone to criticize this here too much. It still looks wonderful at other times including one where our man is in the middle of the picture while a couple bathing women (or mermaids) are in the outer. The scene where our guy is walking down the street really doesn't match up too well but the effect is still quite striking.


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