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CUPID'S INFLUENCE ON THE FILM BOX-OFFICE

Men Say There Is Too Much Sloppy Love Stuff on the Screen and Stay Away

Judy Garland, of "Wizard of Oz" fame, wi" be seen at the Metro I M-G-M's film "Little Nellie

Kelly."

Screen Notes by THE CHIEL

THERE are 2 questions on tne

answers to which Hollywood bases Its production. One is, why do people go to see films? The other is, Why do people stay away from them? The trouble with these 2 queries Is that there are about 1,000 answers to each of them, and no one Is quite sure whether any one answer Is correct.

For vcars I have been wondering why woDle so to see films, but have never been fble to find a satisfactory answer. I have come to a few speculative conclu uons «Inch I do not care to commit to ra*f There is enough warfare In the »orld already. Any candid opinions as to «hy they do not go are also liable to

Start something I ha\e been reading, however, about an Inquisitive American who has been making a personal canvass among men to learn why thsy stay away

The answers he received were almost unanimous The men asserted that they were fed up vith the preponderance of sloppy love interest in films

Unfortunately he left the job half fin- ished He should have put the same ques- tion to as many women I do not know whether there are any statistics as a guide, but, from my own observations, I shculd say that 2 out of every 3 film addicts arc feminine of all ages And that, I should say, accounts for the sloppy love interest to which the men objected Holly- wood uses it to supply the demand of the majority sex

There is ample ground for the conten- tion of the protestants against the love interest Over and over again novels have been screened in which the bay-girl romance has been a minor feature or non- existent But for film purposes the story has b.en rehashed with the emphasis on seme mushy googly eyed blonde who had little or no place in the original storj One reason for the pitchforking of the damsel into the film may be that the studio has its newest find Ethyl Chloride, on contract and a part must be written for her Moreover, unless some kind of boy gets some kind of girl at the fade out, the flapper fans will have none of the film The box-office wins In the contest against dramatic artistry by a knockout In the first round

That plaint against the slaughter of gcod novels for bojj-offlce purposes is perennial And it almost invariably anses through the dragging in of an unneces- sary, and generally disastrous love inter

est It is all verv well In films such as Majerllng,' to mention the first that comes to mind where romance Is the c sence of the story But there are few who are regular film addicts who will not agree that some of the most memor

In Noel Coward's "Bitter Sweet," ccming to the Metro, Jeanette Mac- donald ond Nelson Eddy resume

their old partnership.

able films have been those from which th* love interest is absent Take "Fan- tasia" as one example. Shaw's ' Pygma- lion' for another ' The Great Illusion," "The Informer," and the almost forgotten "Lost Patrol" are other examples

A year or two ago I saw a Western wlthcut a cowgirl for the hero to rescue under a hail torm of bullet- I cannot remember Its name, but the strength of the story and its acting abide A sheriff's ] csse rides out Into the desert in pursu t cf an outlaw and his gang They run out of water and are ambushed Neither the cutlaw nor his men appear on the scene Their presence is indicated by the slow irregular rifle fire For the greater part of ths film the action is static The story tells merely how a dozen brave men died There was in the film an entire absence of sensationalism or heroics But it was a fascinating and impressive film

It is not, I think that the objection is to romance as romance, so much as that it is pushed In where there Is no occasion lor it The grouch is against good stories Leing butchered to make a flapper's holi- day A little while ago we had a whole strirg of stories about milliona'res' daugh- ters marrying truck drivers labourers pclicemen, and dashing young men in similar humb'e but honest occupations Most of them stood up truculently to their prospective fathers-in-law and told them off with a stirring democratic independ- ence and impudence Now, if Hollywood would only give us a few films showing some of these honeyed romances, say 5 years later, the films would be worth see- ing - that is if they were written In accordance with the probabilities

There is quite a new departure in popu- larity polls for the screen in a question- naire issued by the "Motion Picture Herald " which is the leading organ of the industry in USA The idea is to forecast the stars of tomorrow Every exhibitor In USA and Canada was circularised and asked for the names of the 10 most PQPular artists of the younger generation from the box-office aspect

The exhibitors were classified under 3 sections The most remarkable feature o' the return was that the 3 sections all

placed the first five names in the same

order -

1 Laralne Day 3 Ruth Hussey

2 Rita Hayworth 4 Robert Freston

5 Ronald Regan

The other 5 a 1 appeared in each list but in varying order That 3 girls take the l'dding places is Interesting especially so as 6 of the elect are young men The fourth girl is Ann Rutherford who could not escape notice on account of her asso- ciation with Mickey Rooney ar Polly Bene- dict in the Hardy films It is announced that altogether 130 names were submitted fcr the poll

Laraine Da} who heads all 3 lists by several lengths will be remembered as the fiancee of joung Dr Kildare in the Kil- dare series She is an extremely good lcoklng pocket-edition brunette with gor- geous eyes Ruth Hussey had a part in The Philadelphia Story Rita Hayworth has b°en seen here in several roles From the unanimity of the voices of the exhibi- tors who arc in a position to form an accurate judgment of popularitj form it lcoks as though the 10 will be the suc- cessors of the ruling stars or close on their heels

Vivien Leigh, as she appears in the nome role of "Lady Hamilton " The much-talked-of film will go to the

Regent

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