Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Best Chatsworth Movies -- Tell It to the Marines (1926)

"Tell It to the Marines" is a tale about hard nosed Marine Corps Sergeant  O'Hara (Lon Chaney), smart-aleck enlisted private "Skeet" Burns (William Haines), and their relationship with pretty Navy nurse Norma Dale(Eleanor Boardman).

Dispite the fact that "Tell It to the Marines" was MGM's second highest grossing film of 1926, the story starts out slow -- yawn -- until eventually the action picks up and the Marines are sent to join the Asiatic Squadron, stationed at Shanghai, China. 

When Norma and the other nurses are sent to Hangchow to deal with an epidemic they are threatened by a bandit army, so the Marines are ordered to their rescue. 

During a tense evacuation of Hangchow, O'Hara and his men are chosen to be the rear guard at a bridge (located in the Iverson Ranch Garden of the gods). Fierce fighting breaks out, O'Hara is wounded, and he orders Skeet to rejoin the column. Skeet refuses to obey and stays to fight with O'Hara. 

The detachment is finally saved by the timely arrival of an aerial squadron.


Lon Chaney -- Sergeant O'Hara
William Haines -- Private George Robert "Skeet" Burns
Eleanor Boardman -- Nurse Norma Dale
Eddie Gribbon -- Corporal Madden, Skeet's friend
Carmel Myers -- Zaya
Warner Oland -- Chinese bandit leader
Mitchell Lewis -- Native starting fight
Frank Currier -- General Wilcox
Maurice E. Kains -- Harry (as Maurice Kains)

The five minute action sequence filmed in the Garden of the Gods is some of the best special effects work to come out of the silent film era.  Watch the action here…

No comments:

Post a Comment