Full text: The little review (9 (1923), 4)

The war came. It has even been called a great war. The 
theatre was forgotten and the artists cared for the wounded . . . 
I was among those who hoped that this period of jansenism 
would purify the stage and would kill forever this romanticism 
which horrifies me and which personifies stupidity to me. 
American films, sharp as steel, cold like the poles, beautiful 
as the tomb passed before our dazzled eyes. The gaze of Wil 
liam Hart pierced our hearts and we loved the calm landscapes 
where the hoof of his horse raised clouds of dust. 
The inconceivable, the incomparable, the royal Charlie 
Chaplin appeared, gros plan net, his two feet turned out and it 
was inevitable that he was the comic bomb which would over 
turn the theatre and the music-hall. 
Alas, my poor France, country born malicious! You make a 
barricade against exoticism, and the great ships which return to 
port, loaded with opium and unknown fruits, are phantom boats 
which never land. All this is over and it is our players who 
influence America. It is time to be on guard and to cry out 
as did Louis Aragon five years ago, “Down with the clear 
French genius!” 
Yes, the theatre is dead, in spite of the efforts of certain ones: 
de Max, Ventura, Berthe Bovy, Eve Francis, etc And 
the music-hall is dying, the supreme hope! It dies, still loaded 
with fruit, and already one of its most savoury fruits, the poor 
Fortuge, sleeps under the willows of Bagnolet. It dies because 
it is not watered but is put under glass. We have enough of 
revues where they talk of Poincare, of Sacha Guitry, of Maurice 
Rostand, etc.; of revues where ugly nude or semi-nude courte 
sans pass in procession under the baton of the conductor; revues 
where there is nothing, nothing, nothing. 
Imagination dead. It is really too easy to do always the same 
thing and to satisfy the stupid bourgeoisie. The Casino of Paris 
is becoming a branch of the Comedie-Francaise; the Folies- 
Bergeres, a branch of the Odeon. Who would dare to say to a 
counterfeit dancer like Harry Pilcer that he does not dance; to 
a counterfeit singer like Mayol that he does not sing; to a coun 
terfeit player like Polaire what she does not act?

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