|TODAY WE LIVE (director: Howard Hawks; screenwriters: from the short story Turn About by William Faulkner/William Faulkner/Edith Fitzgerald/Dwight Taylor; cinematographer: Oliver T. Marsh; editor: Edward Curtiss; music: William Axt/David Snell/Herbert Stothart; cast: Joan Crawford (Diana Boyce-Smith), Gary Cooper (Lt. Richard Bogard), Robert Young (Lt. Claude Hope), Franchot Tone (Lt. Ronnie Boyce-Smith), Roscoe Karns (Lt. Mac McGinnis), Louise Closser Hale (Applegate), Rollo Lloyd (Major), Hilda Vaughn (Eleanor); Runtime: 110; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Howard Hawks; Warner Home Video; 1933)|
|"A stilted WWI love triangle
story set in England."
by Dennis Schwartz
A stilted WWI love triangle
story set in England, where the heroine's three loves
are all fighting on the front and only one will return
alive. Most of its aerial footage was lifted from
Hell's Angels stock. It's directed without distinction
by Howard Hawks ("Scarface"/"Tiger
Shark"/"Bringing Up Baby") and is based on William Faulkner's
short story Turn
About, which had
appeared in the Saturday
Evening Post on
March 5, 1932. Screenwriters include Faulkner, Edith
Fitzgerald and Dwight Taylor.
In 1916, during WWI, where England battles
American Richard Bogard (Gary Cooper) buys an estate
in Kent from an old English aristocratic family, the
Boyce-Smiths. The displaced owner, Diana "Ann" Boyce-Smith
(Joan Crawford), grieves after just learning her dad
was killed-in-action. Ann moves to the guest
cottage without complaint and says her goodbyes to her brother Ronnie (Franchot Tone) and childhood friend and
neighbor, Claude Hope (Robert Young), both newly
trained naval officers on their way to France.
Bogard falls in love with
Ann, unaware she's engaged to Claude. Ann finds she's
also in love with the American. While biking in the
tells Ann he
has enlisted in the Royal Air Force. Soon afterwards
Ann journeys to France to meet up with Claude and
Ronnie, and volunteers for the ambulance corps. Ann
tells her brother she loves Bogard, but decides to
honor her marriage vow to Claude.
Wartime heroics abound, and
in one incident Claude is blinded by a German torpedo.
That is followed by more heroics, as a blind Claude
and Ronnie take on a German battleship with their speedboat. This
is the same battleship that Bogardus volunteered to
take out in a suicidal bombing mission.
Hardly convincing and a little too gung-ho on wartime heroics for my taste, but watchable for Cooper and Crawford. Of interest, in real life Franchot won Joan's heart and they married after the pic.
REVIEWED ON 9/17/2013 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ