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Wee Willie Winkie

Director:  John Ford
Year Released:  1937
Rating:  2.0

Priscilla (Shirley Temple) travels with Mom (June Lang) to British-occupied India in order to live with her grandfather, Colonel Williams (C. Aubrey Smith) ... except ol' Gramps is distracted by a group of rebels, led by Khoda Khan (Cesar Romero). As a showcase of Temple's precociousness I suppose it has some value - let's ignore Mr. Graham Greene's dirty-old-man ramblings and say that, as a nine-year-old (!), she pulls off the sweet lil' girl routine very well - even though it's still too cloying (look, a tiny soldier outfit!), overly sentimental (you just know when Victor McLaglen's gentle giant starts to get 'a cough' he's a goner) and politically ignorant (although I do realize it was made for a younger audience with no knowledge of the problems with imperialism). Considering the United States' current issues with the Middle East, why not get a bunch of Temple-like actresses together and send them to troublesome areas to negotiate a peace deal? They can sit down with the rogue leaders, share fruit, pout a little, take a nap: voilĂ , diplomacy!

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