Dirigible (1931)

DIRIGIBLE (1931)
Article #709 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 2-22-2003
Posting Date: 7-22-2003
Directed by Frank Capra
Featuring Jack Holt, Ralph Graves, Fay Wray

An attempt to reach the South Pole by means of a dirigible is made.

This early marginally-science-fictional directorial effort by Frank Capra is quite entertaining, even if the romantic triangle storyline that pervades a good deal of it is hackneyed; he is very good at keeping the story moving and holding your interest. However, it’s the special effects which take center stage here, what with the shots of the dirigibles and the planes flying among them. Unfortunately, for this to have maximum effect, you need something that I don’t have; a good print. Mine is in very bad shape, with the sound inaudible at times and human beings occasionally looking nothing more than amorphous blobs, and I hope someday to be able to upgrade to a better print. It is entertaining nevertheless, especially towards the end when it becomes almost harrowing. I find it not at all surprising that Frank Capra went on to a quite distinguished directorial career after making this one.

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