Paramount picture and a Lucien Hubbard production. Directed by Wm. Wellman from John M. Saunders’ story. Harry Perry credited with photography. Titles by Julian Johnson. Opened at the Criterion. N.Y., for a twice daily run Aug. 12, 1927. Running time, 139 mins. split by an intermission, 65 and 74 minutes in respective halves. $2 top.
Clara Preston – Clara Bow
John PowelI – Charles Rogers
David Armstrong – Richard Arlen
Cadet White – Gary Cooper
Sylvia Lewis – Jobyna Ralston
August Schinidt -El Brendel
Celeste – Arlette Marchal
Air Commander – Richard Tucker
Sergeant – Gunboat Smith
Mr. Armstrong – Henry Waithall
Mrs. Armstrong – Julia Swayne Gordon
Mr. Powell – George Irving
Mrs. Powell – Hedda Hopper
French peasant – Nigel de Brulie
Paramount has got Itself a $2 picture. In fact, the most legitimate of the specie It has had since “The Covered Wagon.” The air stuff in this one is going to keep it at the Criterion a long time and they’re going to turn out for it when it takes to the road. “Wings” is there.
This super is not just a $2 entry for Manhattan. It’s a road show — on the strength of that air stuff, a combi-nation of beautiful flying and great camera work. There are thrills and a couple of gasps in it. When the action settles on terra firma there is nothing present that other war supers haven’t had, some to a greater degree. But nothing has possessed the graphic descriptive powers of aerial flying and combat that have been poured into this effort. All of which will carry the 12,600 feet of film currently being unloaded for the populace twice daily. Try and get in — for awhile, anyway.
And the picture is being staged.
Midway in the first part the switch is made to Paramount’s Magnascope, which spreads the screen and projection across the entire stage. This is retained until the finish of the first half. The same thing occurs in the second part, so that much more than half the footage is magnified. More effective than in either “Ironsides” or “Chang,” because of the terrific action. Add to that backstage effects simulating the whine and drone of the motors, in two tones to denote the American and enemy planes, with the music abruptly halting every so often to allow full dramatic intensity, and the result will get under anybody’s skin.