Vienna in the biggest depression, directly after WW1. In a slum, Lila Leid, the wife of lawyer Leid is murdered, Egon, secretary of one of Leid's clients is arrested. He was with her, and ... See full summary »
Georg Wilhelm Pabst
A young girl and her father are kicked out of their house by a cruel noblewoman, and the girl's heart is broken when her sweetheart, the noblewoman's son, won't go to Paris with them. After... See full summary »
Leo and Ulrich are life long friends. Home, on leave from their military training, Leo sees the beautiful Felicitas at the railroad station. Awed by her beauty, they meet again at the ball and quietly leave together. In her room, her husband, about whom she has neglected to inform Leo, comes in and challenges Leo to a duel. The duel is done, the Count is killed and Felicitas is a widow. Leo, however, is 'requested' to serve 5 years in Africa and he tells Ulrich to watch over Felicitas while he is gone. After 3 years, Ulrich is able to get a pardon for Leo and all that Leo thinks about on the way home is Felicitas. When he arrives, he learns that Felicitas has married Ulrich. Felicitas likes that Ulrich is rich and she never told Ulrich the truth about Leo and her. Leo is crushed and does not visit them which saddens Ulrich as he does not know the reason why. Leo tries to stay away from her, but Felicitas uses every opportunity to tempt him to return to her as her lover. She creating a...Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
An alternate ending (included on the "Garbo Silents" DVD release of 2005) continues on from Leo and Ulrich embracing to show Leo deciding to strike up a relationship with Hertha. According to Garbo biographer Barry Paris (speaking on the DVD commentary track), this happy ending was shot by the director under protest. See more »
The fine cast makes this melodrama work, and turns a rather routine plot idea into a good and sometimes memorable movie. John Gilbert and Lars Hanson are a good combination as the male leads, and Greta Garbo is convincing as always, as the woman at the center of everything. Clarence Brown's direction also contains some good touches.
Gilbert and Hanson work well as the two lifelong friends who fall in love with the same woman. Gilbert's more passionate, hot-blooded character forms a believable and interesting contrast to Hanson's innocently earnest portrayal of his loyal, unsuspecting friend. Garbo's character is treated roughly at times by the story and by some of the other characters, but she more than rises to the occasion, and as she often does, she makes what could have been a stereotyped love interest into a complex and sometimes tormented character.
Barbara Kent also does well in a smaller role, and her character (the younger sister of Hanson's character) is used effectively at some important moments that help develop the main characters. Brown adds a lighter tone to a couple of sequences when suitable, and he provides a good pace. Given the fairly simple story, it might run a bit long, but otherwise it is well-crafted and effective.
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