Of Human Bondage (1934)

index

Original plot
Leslie Howard can’t quit bad girl Bette Davis.

Big thoughts
In a move that launched Bette Davis’ superstardom I was more captivated by Leslie Howard. Also, this is on recommendation from The Toast .

Obligatory bus anecdote
Sat next to a guy recently who had Aldo-style black shiny loafers paired with pj pants and a t-shirt. It was the exact opposite of me and my business casual+crappy sneakers.

Pertinent GIF
HumanBond

The Random Remake
Sensitive introvert Philip Carey (Cillian Murphy) is a man whose life is a series of silent tasks. He studies in med school at the beginning of a new semester in large lecture halls, alone in a row by himself. He comes home to a tiny loft in which he lives, of course, alone. He can spend days without uttering more than a few sentences to other human beings. And he’s adapted. But then, with a text on his phone, we see why his solitude is welcoming: the love of his life, bad girl Mildred (Emily Blunt) needs help.

Flashing back to their early college days, with Philip madly, disorientingly in love Mildred he followed her around in hopes of luring her in. But Mildred had other plans for other men, and chose someone else over Philip. Now she’s back in his life, pregnant and discarded by the father. Philip scrapes together his life savings (which isn’t much) to get Mildred a place to stay and accompanies her to the women’s clinic. He has to forfeit the semester at med school after he can’t pay the tuition. He hopes to win Mildred over again but fails to do so, and Mildred scorns him, tells him she never liked him, and leaves in the arms of a man down the hall in Philip’s building.

Philip, later, tries to move on, and accepts an invitation from one of his professors to lunch at his house after the prof was wondering where he was all of a sudden. Philip does not tell the prof the whole story of Mildred, but the other attendee at the lunch, the prof’s daughter Sally (Greta Gerwig), seems to get it. Soon Philip and Sally connect and get closer. But then, like clockwork, Mildred is back in the picture, things having soured with Philip’s neighbor. She says she needs money for cosmetic surgery so she can be a model. Meanwhile Sally, who does freelance graphic design, has lent Philip some money for school. Philip is standing in front of Mildred, reaching for his wallet, when his phone lights up with a loving text from Sally. Now Philip has a choice to make… Roll credits.

The pitch
Of Human Bondage: His heart is all tied up

Next up: I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932)

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