Cinema: The New Pictures, Mar. 2, 1959

The Black Orchid (Ponti-Girosi; Paramount) is a sort of Marty-come-lately, inspired by one of the less startling of sociological discoveries: poor people are human. From this premise the moviemakers have deduced the facts of low-budget life as presented in this film: 1) poverty is cute, 2) stupidity is lovable, 3) sentimentality is feeling, 4) hard work never killed anybody, 5) suffering is actually good for people, and 6) anyway, there is always sex.

In the course of their study, the Hollywood sociologists have also investigated a specific minority group, the Italian Americans, and have reached some unshakable conclusions: 1) many of...

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