Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


FREDRIC MARCH: A CONSUMMATE ACTOR. Charles Tranberg. BearManor; 2013.

Tranberg, who has also written books on Fred MacMurray, and an especially outstanding tome on Agnes Moorehead, now looks at the life and career of Fredric March. Tranberg makes the point that March, strangely, seems forgotten when he won and was nominated for several Academy Awards, and appeared in several famous motion pictures, such as the original A Star is Born. Tranberg looks at March's early life, his stage career, his brief first marriage, and his long-lasting union with actress Florence Eldridge. Unfortunately, nowadays March would be seen as a bit of a pig and sexual harasser when it came to women, at least according to several accounts in the book, but this, of course, doesn't negate his considerable acting ability and his many achievements. Two of March's greatest performances were in Inherit the Wind and Middle of the Night, his last romantic lead role.

Verdict: Solid bio of a fine and unjustly neglected actor. ***.

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