Howard Estabrook

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Cimarron Review


Good
In 1931 you didn't just go out to the desert, line up 500 horses and covered wagons, and recreate the Oklahoma land rush. This is early sound filmmaking. How would you record such a thing with the primitive microphones of the day?

Well, in 1931, that's exactly what Wesley Ruggles did, creating the most impressive opening scene in the history of film up to that point. (It's probably why his film won Best Picture that year, though it's frequently regarded as one of the least merited winners of that award.)

Continue reading: Cimarron Review

Hell's Angels Review


Very Good
Martin Scorsese tells the story of Hell's Angels in The Aviator better than Hell's Angels does itself, but should you find yourself curious about this epic and infamous production, here's the straight dope. Jean Harlow's screen debut isn't much to look at, to be honest. The air battles, however, are another story: When the boys from Oxford take down that zeppelin, I'm sure 1930's moviegoers had seen nothing like it. Behind the scenes of the war, the movie's a pass.
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