Gabriel Over the White House

The newly-elected president, a ridiculously civic-minded party hack, has an accident that knocks some sense into him by the grace of God, there was no other way to explain FDR, whose presidency is foretold from beginning to end.

The civilian army of employment, the repeal of Prohibition as a “cesspool”, and making war on gangsters, “making war on war” as G.B. Shaw puts it, a covenant of nations, death in office. For his critics, the accusation of dictatorship.

Variety was outraged, Mordaunt Hall of the New York Times took it in his professional stride. Dave Kehr (Chicago Reader) calls it “protofascist” like Andrew Sarris on Capra’s Meet John Doe.