Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

The Adventures of Mark Twain


I guess this is about normal for a biopic of this era. Get some of the basic facts of a man’s life right but don’t let it bug you if you don’t because no one cares. Get a lot of it wrong. Fill it in with the standard nice-guy episodes that could apply to Abe Lincoln or Robert E. Lee or George Armstrong Custer or Thomas Edison as well as Samuel Clemens. I mean, really, there is hardly a scene here that wasn’t reminiscent of other scenes in other biographies. Fredric March is good, considering the trash he is given to work with. Alexis Smith is lovely, and mostly sits around adoring her Sam. About the only thing that really works is the telling of “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,” and that probably didn’t actually happen.