my poem "In the Beginning" begins
Richard Barthelmess wearing a barrel
Rod LaRocque a towel
William Haines with his trousers down
I'm referring to images in Daniel Blum's A Pictorial History of the Silent Screen -- a volume as important to my development as any work of literature. & of that trio of images the most memorable is that of LaRocque.
Rod LaRocque had the sexy kind of name Henry Willson creatd. however the actor predates Willson & that's his real name. he had a significant career in silent films. with talkies he was leading man to Joan Crawford & Barbara Stanwyck in some of their earliest features before drifting into supporting roles. his career came to an end in the Capra classic "Meet John Doe."
this still is from "The Cruise of the Jasper B." I finally saw it at the 1979 Cinecon in NYC. but I had no clear memory of it so when I saw Grapevine Video had it on DVD I orderd a copy. it's a minor film with a silly script (partially written by a young Tay Garnett). the only cast member to challenge the star is the wonderful Snitz Edwards with his pliable face. but the film belongs to LaRocque who spends its entirity wearing as little as possible.
so after decades of that still in my mind it was thrilling to see it come to life again.