Sunday, September 29, 2013

Jumpin' Jesus: I think I've figured it out!

Just when I think I've seen it all. 





ANOTHER photo of Harold Lloyd that unsettles me, both thrills and makes me a little bit uneasy, because in that gaze, that gaze I've tried so hard to capture in my novel The Glass Character, there is that slightly unmoored quality, the compelling, disconcerting eyebeam/high-beam of a genius.

And other things. Lloyd telegraphed superbly with his eyes. Hurt. Seduction. Goddamn ferocious intelligence. And in this one, it, yes, I confirmed something I've denied for a very long time, something I've seen and seen in his lovely gorgeous movies, something I cannot deny now and which undoubtedly added to his cockeyed charm:

He's cross-eyed.

Well, only a little. Half a bubble off plumb, he might call it, with his wonderful earthy Midwestern way of expressing himself. Just a tinch, but enough to give him that quality. Can't even describe it. That, and the hair, are what make him so devastating. The hair, well, I don't mean when the hair stood up, magnetized by some sort of electric charge (imagine electrocuting your lead actor just for a gag!) -  it's the uncontrollable bushyness of it, the forest. In many of the early ones he's slicked it back with half a pound of pomade, as men did then, but when there's a chase scene or a rough scene or even a love scene of any note, his hair springs out into wild black waves, and we then see the other side of him.

The side I wrote about the other day, that fierce erotic clinch with Jobyna Ralston, that - who knows what to call it! When lions make love, which they do for days on end, the male lion grasps the female by the back of the neck and holds her there. Not that she tries to get away, but if she tried, she probably couldn't. It's no doubt like the grasp a mother lion would use on her cubs to carry them around - not meant to draw blood, but still, firm enough that they can't escape.

So what's the point of all this? God if I know, but I do know I am captured, perhaps for good.

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