Romance and heartbreak walk hand-in-hand when Philip Chagal accidentally meets Helen Lawrence in a restaurant where she is a waitress. Unhappily married to a woman who suffers from mental ...
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Edwin J. Burke
Romance and heartbreak walk hand-in-hand when Philip Chagal accidentally meets Helen Lawrence in a restaurant where she is a waitress. Unhappily married to a woman who suffers from mental illness, he is attracted to her and they make a date to go sailing, arriving at Philip's country home just as a storm is breaking. Helen learns who he is for the first time, a celebrated-and-famous concert pianist and, falling in love with him, decides to leave before matters go further. A hurricane hits and their car is crippled by a falling tree. Rising water forces then to seek shelter in the choir loft of a church, where they spend the night. They are rescued in the morning and Helen meets Philip's wife, and learns their story. Helen and Philip meet once more, and Philip sails to Europe with his wife but promises to come back some day.Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
After the movie came out, author James M. Cain sued Universal Pictures and director John M. Stahl for copyright violation. Although the movie was based on Cain's novel, "A Modern Cinderella," Cain claimed the filmmakers had stolen the scene where the two lovers take refuge in a church during a storm from his 1937 novel, "Serenade." Screenwriter Dwight Taylor admitted he'd taken the concept of the church scene from "Serenade," but had written an entirely new scene for the movie. The judge in the case ruled against Cain, saying there were significant differences between the book and movie scenes. The case established the legal principle of "scènes à faire" ("scenes to be written"), which states that certain concepts, settings, and devices (i.e. spy gadgets in spy novels) appear in multiple works of fiction and are therefore not subject to copyright laws. Today, the concept of "scènes à faire" is often used in software copyright cases, where certain types of programs, files, and variables appear in all software packages and cannot be copyrighted. See more »
The final sequence haunts me (obviously above reason). I cannot understand how the scene could be analyzed purely in relation with spatial organization, performances, or script's expectations, as a whole or each part separately. Moreover, if there is any style here, it dissolves in pure abstraction. The scene is mainly a single medium shot of both actors sitting side by side at a table. Two glasses and a bottle of wine on the table. Two candles at both front corners, delimiting the shot's borders. That's about all. Charles Boyer was Charles Boyer, and Irene Dunne, Irene Dunne. I do not trust the additive value of the summation of all aforementioned elements. I cannot understand my astonishment but in this distinct feeling of both renunciation and uprooting, which leaves its mark on all scenes, in the short breath of the suffocating voices, in the petrified bodies that do not belong to this world, in the icy ridges of a frame with no way out. The voice is here a muffled cry in front of an unbreakable wall.
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