We Live Again is a fine, artistic production which further impresses Anna Sten as a celluloid satellite, vividly displaying her histrionic talents, with Fredric March equally effective. It is Tolstoy’s Resurrection beautifully re-created in dialog and endowed with lavish Goldwynesque artistry.
The film itself opens almost as a scenic, showing the peasants tilling the soil for benefit of a tyrannical nobility, and winds up something of a spec, with the orgy of secular splendor at the 8-10 minute Easter service and the extra-curricular maneuvers between the student officers and the ballerinas from the czar’s subsidized ballet.
The nobleman March portrays is well depicted to illustrate how the youth’s natural instincts are sated by power and pleasure to the degree that he betrays the peasant girl (Sten) with whom he had been reared in equal companship.
March’s resurrection and regeneration is handled with unusual restraint. Director Rouben Mamoulian has held him in fine check, at the same time not sacrificing Sten. Her blonde beauty is enhanced by a highly effective native histrionism which the camera angles and the lighting further emphasize.