July 3, 2012
Andy Griffith made one timeless classic of a film, but will obits mention it?
Irresponsibly adopted by the left to bash their Political Pinata of the Moment (most recently, Glenn Beck) A Face in the Crowd is a cautionary tale for the (populist) left and the right about that dangerous intersection where show biz collides with politics.
As I wrote two years ago:
Roads is the lead character of the recently revived film A Face in the Crowd (1957). Like Network, A Face in the Crowd is about the power the mainstream media presumably wields over the masses, and the making (and unmaking) of a broadcasting demagogue.
Usually typecast as the lovable innocent backwoods boy, Andy Griffith shocked viewers with his portrayal of Rhodes, an amoral drifter with a gift for gab, boundless ambition and no redeeming qualities.
(That’s a true Hollywood rarity, because viewers tend to appreciate villains as long as they are charming.
(Perhaps only Edward G. Robinson’s stupid, humorless, sadistic Scarface  character comes close to Roads in terms of sheer incorrigibility.)