15 January 2009 | morrisonhimself
Is this an allegory? Is it intended to show the futility of war? Is it just a story of a moment of boys' life? Supposedly it is somewhat autobiographical, a story by Ferenc Molnar.
Whatever its intent, and I suppose a viewer is allowed to see what he wants, it is a moving and beautifully done film.
There is one very sad irony: Jimmy Butler, who gives a magnificent performance, and who shows so much talent you just know he is going to be a big star, was later a casualty of the real war, World War II.
He shows astonishing presence, especially for one so young -- he was 13 when "No Greater Glory" was released -- and gave a performance not surpassed by many adults.
Frankie Darro, sometimes billed as "Darrow," was nearly always simply great (You must see him in "Wild Boys of the Road," where he performs surely the first "break dance" on film.), and he is a stand-out here.
Ralph Morgan and Lois Wilson are wonderful as parents of the boy played by George Breakston, just heartbreaking as they wish their little son recovery from his illness.
Really, even when an occasional player is less than great, this movie and the portrayals are enthralling.
Turner Classic Movies is to be commended for letting us see this.