Dec 31, 2020
Our second Clara Bow episode pairs a couple of sharply contrasting films: a child star comedy, Helen's Babies (1924), directed by William A. Seiter, and a didactic melodrama, Capital Punishment (1925), directed by James P. Hogan, with a story by producer B. P. Schulberg. Bow has supporting roles in both; but has occasion to display her lack of inhibition as a comedian in both and her emotive skills as an actress in the second. The Schulberg film, whose premise may have influenced Fritz Lang's Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (1956), surprises with its pre-Depression concern for the plight of the urban poor, while the presentation of two impish tomboy girl-children in Helen's Babies, based on a popular Victorian novel about two little boys, chimes neatly with certain aspects of Bow's own persona, even if her place is taken in this one by Baby Peggy.
0h 01m 00s: Helen’s Babies (1924) [dir: William A. Seiter]
0h 22m 10s: Capital Punishment (1925) [dir: James P. Hogan]
* Find Elise’s latest film piece on Billy Wilder and 1930s Romantic Comedy
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