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PUBLIC ENEMY: Why does everyone talk about the grapefruit?


Paul F.
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I have been wondering as to why everyone talks about James Cagney pushing a grapefruit into Mae Clarke's face in PUBLIC ENEMY, considering the horrible murders that take place in this film! There is one scene where Cagney coldly shoots his old friend to death while the man is playing the piano; the camera discreetly moves away before this happens (today, they would show it in the most gruesome detail). And then there is the gruesome ending of the film in which we see what happened to Cagney's character, which I will not spoil (I feel for his poor mother). Yet it was not these scenes that endured, but the GRAPEFRUIT! Maybe this is because it is more pleasant to dwell on this scene which is not one of horrible violence and which can even be seen as humorous. It was interesting to find out that Mae Clarke wasn't in most of the film! Some might say that this film glorified being a gangster. I don't think so! If anything, it showed how you can end up if you live that life.  

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You bring up some interesting points, Paul. But I don't think you'll get much of a response if you post in this section of the forums. This General Discussion section is part of the message board dedicated only to the annual TCM Film Festival held in LA every year. Perhaps that's who you wanted to address, but very few people ever check out this section of the forums. To get a larger response, you should repost this in the main General Discussion section near the top of the main menu. If you intended to only speak to Film Festival attendees, then my apologies for interfering. 

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You bring up some interesting points, Paul. But I don't think you'll get much of a response if you post in this section of the forums. This General Discussion section is part of the message board dedicated only to the annual TCM Film Festival held in LA every year. Perhaps that's who you wanted to address, but very few people ever check out this section of the forums. To get a larger response, you should repost this in the main General Discussion section near the top of the main menu. If you intended to only speak to Film Festival attendees, then my apologies for interfering. 

You ARE a good Samaritan! Thank you! God bless.

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