I love vintage science fiction and have been writing book reviews on Goodreads for a number of years on the topic. It recently occurred to me that, as a Goodreads Writer, Researcher & Fan on the topic of vintage s.f. films (usually from the silent era), that I have this blog as a platform for writing about them as well. Why not? So, here then is my very first film critique: = = = = = = = = = = = = = As the Earth Turns (made in 1938, distributed in 2019)
I consider this an incredible effort both by Mr. Richard Lyford who shows lots of talent here and by Mr. Ed Hartman who provides excellent music and was key in the film's restoration / distribution.
Lyford directs the film and also acts in it. Part of his style reminds me very much of that of Abel Gance insofar as the quick cutting effect to make a visual montage. His acting role is a precursor to Michael Rennie in The Day the Earth Stood Still. The story is a poignant one.
As the Earth Turns shows the potential of a budding professional rather the attempts of a raw amateur. Parts of the movie already display the energy of a future brilliant (and award winning) film-maker. Some footage may ~ upon first impression ~ seem amateurish (for lack of a better word) until you realize the creativity that was utilized with a very tight budget. That cuts to the very a-r-t of film-making, no?
This is not an Ed Wood film! Think rather The Ghost of Slumber Mountain before Willis O'Brien's work on The Lost World or King Kong. ... or maybe George Lucas when he made the student film THX 1138 4EB well before Star Wars (or even the professional film similarly named THX 1138)
A rare treat insofar it's a silent film well after the silent film era, As the Earth Turns comes very highly recommended here.