Come and Get It ★★★½

There's a really staggering montage of the logging process that's both an impressive, uncharacteristic moment of sheer spectacle (I haven't seen this much timber flowing down rapid rivers since Teuvo Tulio's The Song Of The Scarlet Flower) and Hawks again indulging a penchant for documentary footage grounding otherwise loose-limbed protagonists. In outline this is another one of those endless Edna Ferber sagas covering 30 years and two generations of some epic soap opera shit (can't say the woman didn't know what she liked), but Hawks cuts out the middle entirely and sticks to two compressed time periods, which helps. Gets really interesting when Frances Farmer's character dies and the actress returns as her own daughter, whom Edward Arnold immediately develops an unsavory attraction towards; the disorienting effect of watching him pursue this potential affair with the same woman twice over is as close as Hawks gets to That Obscure Object Of Desire. A shame that William Wyler fumbles the ending, but what comes before's more than enough to make this near pantheon.

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