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This Day and Age 1933

DeMille returns to the high school milieu of The Godless Girl when that institution was still so fresh on the mass culture landscape that any examination of it felt ultra-contemporary and important. Temporarily empowered with law-enforcement authority in a Boys Week gambit, the valedictorians of North High School embark on a vigilante crusade to rid the city of the gangsterism that the adults and their due process niceties can’t quash. Though nominally one of DeMille’s modern stories, the boys’ solutions have a decidedly Old Testament flavor, not least extracting information from one hood by dangling him over a pit of live rats. Simultaneously awestruck by fascist methodology and solidly anti-bigotry (the boys’ crusade is set in motion by the murder of a Jewish tailor), This Day and Age is civic-minded in a one-of-a-kind way. (Kyle Westphal)


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