Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Girl Said No (Sam Wood, 1930) F

When you head into a William Haines picture, you almost always know what to expect. Haines always plays a cocky young fellow (usually an athlete, but not here) who falls in love with someone else's girl and then tries to woo her, all while learning a lesson about humility, during the rest of the picture. In The Girl Said No, we get all that but I was horribly offended and disgusted (and I don't do that easily) by Haines' character's treatment of the girl he chases after. She really does say, "No," quite emphatically, and when he doesn't listen and continues to pursue her, it takes on the form of rape and I definitely don't need to see that. Add to that the scene where Haines puts a bag over the girls head and kidnaps her away from her wedding and I nearly felt like vomiting. Haines' characters are usually cads, but they have a redeeming factor that makes up for it in the end; here, Haines is a complete prick the whole way through and still manages to get whatever he wants. The Girl Said No is a relic of a type of film that's better left in the past and with no redeeming factors to unearth it.

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