Movie Series Salutes Henry Fonda

Barrington librarian Doug Swiszcz hosts a Wednesday matinee film series, 'Fond of Fonda', in the library auditorium; it starts tomorrow afternoon.

Tired of movies at your local cinema that are filled with explicit gore, violence, sexuality and computer-generated special effects aimed at the under-21 crowd? 

Do you long for the days of classic Hollywood cinema, when narrative and character were the chief means of telling a story?

So does Barrington librarian and film buff Doug Swiszcz. You can join him Wednesday afternoons at 2 for Fond of Fonda: A Movie Lecture Series Saluting Henry Fonda.

Starting tomorrow, March 6, it will run for five consecutive weeks at the Barrington Public Library auditorium.

The matinee series opens Wednesday with The Grapes of Wrath (1940), director John Ford’s adaptation of John Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize-winning realist novel of the previous year, said Swiszcz.

"Fonda was the ideal actor to personify the resilience of the common man in Tom Joad," said Swiszcz. "The son of a Dust Bowl sharecropping family forced off of their land, Tom heads out to California with his loved ones in hopes of a better life.

"But, like thousands of other 'Okies' who migrated west, the Joads encounter hardship and disappointment," he said.

The supporting cast includes John Carradine and Jane Darwell. The black and white film runs for just over two hours and is unrated.

Swiszcz offers commentary before the start of the film. The showing is free and open to all, he said.

Here’s the rest of the lineup:

March 13: The Lady Eve (1941) – Conniving Barbara Stanwyck preys on the  naïve heir to a brewery fortune (Fonda) in this screwball comedy. (Black & white, 94 min.) 

March 20: My Darling Clementine (1946) – Director John Ford’s imaginative take on lawman Wyatt Earp (Fonda) and the shootout at the O.K. Corral. (Black & white, 97 min.)

March 27: 12 Angry Men (1957) –  Fonda is the lone dissenting juror in the trial of a  young man accused of killing his father. (Black & white, 96 min.)

April 3: Clarence Darrow (1974) – Fonda’s videotaped-for-television as the famed lawyer is a one-man tour-de-force. (Color, 81 min.)


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