Eve Golden’s YouTube Theater: Well, Here Is the Damndest Film You’ll Ever See

 

'Tomato Is Another Day'
“Cigarette Life!” A deathless line from “Tomato Is Another Day.”


I offer for your bewilderment Tomato Is Another Day (1930), seven of the weirdest minutes ever committed to film. It was never widely shown (for obvious reasons) and was only rediscovered in the wonderful age of cable, DVDs and YouTube. And no one knows what the hell to make of it.

 

'Tomato Is Another Day'

“What time did you say your husband would be back?”


Is it a parody of the earliest talkies? I’ve seen nearly every early talkie, and this does not even approach the stagiest of them. A parody of late-1920s avant-garde theater? Well, Strange Interlude had opened in 1928, so maybe . . . Lots of (virtual online) ink has been spilled on this little gem, also sometimes called Tomatoes Another Day. “Image and sound are inflexibly congruent, forbidding both artist and spectator the freedom of intellectual dissonance and dissent,” writes one film theorist, who I picture wearing a monocle and one of those Brooklyn soul patches.

Another writer opines that Tomato Is Another Day “seems to suggest that freedom is both an attainment and a rejection, for freedom is found when we at once safeguard the autonomous spaces of the silent imagination and . . .” Oh, I’m sorry, I can’t even type that with a straight face.

Now I have to go lie down for a few minutes and have some ice cream.

 

 

 

image
SFX: Crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch, and so forth.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OK, I’m back.

Me, I think Tomato Is Another Day is just pure silliness. I think the cast and crew got together and decided to have some fun, like a Carol Burnett or Saturday Night Live sketch. I particularly like the “I give you my awl” line, being a huge fan of bad puns. So settle back and enjoy. Or don’t:

 

And remember: “Cigarette life!

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About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1930, Eve Golden, Film, Hollywood and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Eve Golden’s YouTube Theater: Well, Here Is the Damndest Film You’ll Ever See

  1. Howard Decker says:

    Seems to this young whippersapper to be a satire on a flicker or perhaps on a “school” of acting.They are attempting to cut something/someones to ribbons.he adwer may be lost in the mists of time.

    Like

  2. Eve says:

    No one has commented.

    It is good to be alone.

    Like

  3. mandymarie20 says:

    It’s a toss up between a parody of films and the most painfully acting I’ve ever seen (aside from Manos, the Hands of Fate). So was it an clever art house piece to make people think as most sites seem to say or just a bad film? I’m not sure. I leaned towards parody after viewing it until I read several places which stated the creator tried to suppress it. Why would you try to hide your film unless you think it’s terrible? Until (if ever) we find documentation from someone involved in the film, I’m not sure we will ever know the truth about this film.

    Like

  4. Eve says:

    From a friend of mine:

    “That YouTube today was really, really, the weirdest thing I have ever seen, and I’ve seen me some weird. At one point it occurred to me it had a sort of Zen koan, one-hand-clapping effect. There really are no words. It is just one of those things, that once you see it, you cannot unsee it.”

    Like

  5. Benito says:

    Scarlett O’Hara’s last line in Gone With The Wind will never sound the same.

    Like

  6. Diane Ely says:

    Does anyone know who these actors are, particularly the girl? No info is given at IMDB or other sites.

    Like

    • Eve says:

      I remember on a message board years ago someone said he was the actress’ son, but I have searched and searched and can’t find anything.

      All three cast members are terrific, I think–it’s hard to do “weird” that well.

      Like

  7. E. Yarber says:

    This is a film by James Sibley Jr. that came between his two experimental film collaborations with Melville Webber: “The Fall of the House of Usher” and “Lot in Sodom.” If you think “Tomatoes Another Day” is weird in itself , Kino’s “Avant-Garde Collection #3” has not only the full film but five minutes of OUTTAKES from it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Eve says:

      Wait–OUTTAKES from “Tomatoes Another Day?”

      * faints dead away *

      Like

      • E. Yarber says:

        The DVD set also includes the 1952 film “Celery Stalks at Midnight,” which seems to be a perfect double-bill. I just wish I could find the booklet that came with the discs. It has the info everyone else has been curious about. Kids, always remember to put your things carefully away.

        What little I can add is that the film was written by songwriter Alec Wilder (“I’ll Be Around”), who also did the music for the two experimental films I mentioned. After “Lot in Sodom,” his next movie job was the Disney animated feature “Make Mine Music.”

        Like

  8. Maury Kendall says:

    I didn’t see Bill Goodwin *anywhere* in this…oh, sorry, still stuck on that one. “Tomatoes” was just plain weird.

    Like

  9. Laura C. says:

    The leading man is wearing a hellacious amount of eyeliner.

    Like

  10. aryedirect says:

    The male and female lead could have been the future Bob Cummings and the future Carol Burnett in the world’s first time travel talkie.

    Like

  11. Tess says:

    It’s a play on, “tomorrow is another day”?

    Like

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