Angels Over Broadway
A shill, a dancer, and a playwright save an embezzler from suicide.
Hecht’s surreal joke was discarded by Variety but admired by Crowther, who didn’t get it.
A theatrical production in an anagram or rebus. The New York Times lent spice to the habitual incomprehension Hecht received.
Specter of the Rose
Like Powell & Pressburger in The Red Shoes, Hecht addresses himself to the tragedy of Nijinsky, who did not know perhaps that he was a symbol as much as anything else.
That is surely a tragic fate, there is something almost humorous in it, to be the specter in a girl’s dream of art, that is funny, almost.
To say the film was not understood is to say Hecht wrote and directed it (with Lee Garmes), he avenges himself upon the critics. “The indignation of fools is my favorite crown.”
Long before Wiseman, he discloses the secret. “You don’t dance for an audience, they just happen to be there watching you.”
Long before Antonioni, the true artist admires a portion of his work, “it’s nice there,” he says, indicating a passage.
A million insights and revelations, “the foxholes of art”.
The New York Times said it was “sheer pretentiousness” and damned Hitchcock by calling for something like Spellbound and Notorious at which “everyone else has a good time,” Halliwell’s Film Guide calls it “a rather hilarious bid for culture,” rather like Nijinsky in Boston.
Time Out Film Guide compares it to a different work altogether, Meyer’s Beyond the Valley of the Dolls.
Variety noted the extreme modesty of the budget, which is nowhere felt though Variety thought so.
Actors and Sin
The artist in New York and Hollywood.
She is a lioness of the theater, unfaithful to her playwright husband (“the youngest ex-genius Broadway has seen since Saroyan”), contemptuous of critics whether they praise her or not, her star dims and fades, she dies, etc.
“Actor’s Blood”, it’s in the veins or there is no understanding at all.
She is the writer of “a cinema masterpiece that will prove once and for all that Hollywood has come of age as a center of art.”
“Woman Of Sin” (A Woman of Sin is her first screenplay), Forman’s Amadeus and Kazan’s The Last Tycoon explain the mystery.
This was not understood by the New York Times (Bosley Crowther), nor by Variety.