Friday, September 23, 2011

Rhodes (1936)

I think we can safely assume by “exploitation” the filmmakers of Rhodes aren't referring to underpaid and oppressed native populations and their subjugation by unscrupulous diamond scavengers with unconvincing accents.  No, they are referring to “exploitation natural,” which is apparently where women sporting Natalie Portman’s mask from Black Swan are sold at auctions to dudes wearing hats.  It is also safe to assume that before Rhodes, conventional wisdom stated that no film could possibly have the critical impact on the sophisticated moviegoing populace as the deep and profound Covered Wagon (which sounds uncannily like a computer generated title for a moderately successful studio picture from the PC game The Movies, circa. 2004).  But then came Cimarron, and now comes Rhodes which, in spite of being heralded as a hybrid of two westerns and starring Walter Huston for chrissake, somehow isn’t a western (nor does it appear to feature any automobiles, hitchhikers, or 20-minute takes of Vincent Gallo, much to the dismay of homonym-loving audiences).  Each of the bold titles at the bottom of the page has great unintentional comic potential in a sexual context, but before divulging too greatly they should be carefully categorized by orientation:

Diamond Master = straight dude.
Empire Builder = gay natural.
Jungle Conqueror = bicurious extraordinary. 
Covered Wagon = virgin.

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