On my occasional visits to TheRoot.com I am usually impressed with some piece of commentary offered on it's digital pages. Stanley Crouch's critical essay of the 1942 film , In This Our Life, is a fine example of the site's standout submissions. I was particularly struck by Mr. Crouch's ability to speak both, to the racial overtones of the film, and how these privileged notions are a negative representation of our cumulative national character:
"The film also foresaw the insufferably narcissistic age in which we now live because Stanley Timberlake's favorite word is the first person pronoun --I, me, my, mine -- and her sense of life is that she is due her happiness as the supreme expression of privileged existence. Endless entitlement is what this woman interprets as love, from within her family or without. It does not matter who has to die or be imprisoned or which arrogant blood relative will die within six months. They were all born to service her appetite for fun in some way, which is why Bette Davis knew what Stanley was and how well her very presence, even on the silver screen, explained so much about why the stubborn quality of Southern bigotry stood in place for so, so long. Letting the privileges of bigotry go would have meant growing up, a condition we Americans -- North and South, East and West -- have never enjoyed because it gets in the way of our gusto."
In either case, I was compelled to watch the film (provided in youTube segments below) as continued research for my whitebitches | The Platinum Eaters series. Enjoy!