Having achieved fame and fortune in a series of bucolic country-boy roles, Charles Ray decided he was ready to become his own producer. For a while, Ray did all right by himself, turning out "typical" vehicles that pleased his fans. Then he became fatally ambitious-and the result was the infamous fiasco The Courtship of Miles Standish. It's the old story, as set down by Longfellow, of John Alden's (Ray) suit for the hand of Priscilla Mullens (Enid Bennett) on behalf of his tongue-tied friend Miles Standish (E. Alyn Warren). Oodles of money were spent on this costumer, but seemingly no effort was exerted to make the story interesting or involving. The film bankrupted Charles Ray, forcing him to become a "hired hand" for other producers; by the 1930s he was a has-been, reduced to bits and extra roles. Though Courtship of Miles Standish no longer exists, viewers can still get a few yocks out of Hal Roach's 1924 two-reel parody, Courtship of Miles Sandwich.
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