Continuing onward with my short series of Bogart sketches here's one from the 1936 film The Petrified Forest. This is considered Bogie's breakout role where he plays a fugitive killer who takes hostage a cast of customers and staff at a worn-out ramshackle of a diner in the middle of the Arizona desert.
Humphrey does his stuff and portrays a killer with depth, and so do the rest of the characters. Bette Davis plays a waitress with talent and dreams and Leslie Howard perfectly plays a vagabond writer wondering from town to town, country to country.
I loved the commentary Leslie Howard's character makes about being a writer, an intellectual and the inner anxiety and self-doubt he's experienced because of it. The movie is a great stew of colorful characters - a prideful American business owner, a cynical would-be patron, a grandfather who may or may not be a money hoarder while his son's diner is struggling. All this backdropped against a hostage scenario.
This one should spring some debate about the decisions of certain characters in the end and whether their intentions are truly as they wished them to be interpreted. Give it a watch.
Douglas E. Draper Jr. is an award-winning artist working out of Philadelphia. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute, College of Art and his work has been exhibited throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, Annapolis, Baltimore and various other cities and galleries. His fine art and illustrative work can be seen from such publishers as Moonstone Books, Top Shelf, Desperado, IDW, and many others.
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