Young America (Borzage, 1932)

Young America (Frank Borzage, 1932)

Lot of cheese in this one. Much of the film is a strong, honest, and harrowing presentation of the highs and lows of adolescent friendship, though there are sprinkles of a corny ‘poor misunderstood youth’ message throughout. Luckily, these instances are somewhat subtle and mostly fitting to the dynamic of the central friendship. These friends are like brothers; they fight for each other, sometimes get the other in trouble, but always ending up having each other’s backs. As a result, there last two scenes together are heartbreaking and set up a sorrowful but fitting ending. But at this point the corny message comes out in full force which results in a theme shift, awkwardly forced dialogue, and a jarringly misplaced tone. This has to be Borzage’s worst.  6/10

young america borzage


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