The most uncomplicated of classic Hollywood directors, Allan Dwan was also the most prolific. No one knows exactly how many films he made during his astonishing half-century career, but a fair guess would be about 450. An electrical engineer, he entered the film industry in 1909 as a lighting man, moved quickly up the ladder, and between 1911 and 1930 shot more than 250 films, most of them westerns. Dwan was heavily influenced by D.W. Griffith, and long remained the great upholder of the Griffith tradition—a clean, spare visual style in which technique is totally at the service of the dramatic material. He was nicknamed "Practicality Dwan"—whatever the problem, he'd solve it. When Griffith wanted a... More >>>