A once-timid young woman gains newfound confidence after a failed marriage, much to the chagrin of her miserable family.

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(adaptation), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Neil Cornish
...
Dwight Deacon
...
Diana Deacon
Mabel Van Buren ...
Ina Deacon
Mae Giraci ...
Monona Deacon (as May Giraci)
Clarence Burton ...
Ninian Deacon
Ethel Wales ...
Grandma Bett
Taylor Graves ...
Bobby Larkin
...
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Storyline

Wlliam deMille produced and directed Miss Lulu Bett, a film of extraordinary conviction and insight. It was then often the custom for unmarried women to lodge with family; thus we discover Miss Lulu in a boring Midwestern town, an exploited household drudge for her sister and her overbearing brother-in-law. In the course of the story (based upon the Pulitzer Prize play and novel by Zona Gale), Lulu evolves from slavery into an attractive and self-assured woman, prepared to make her own life. Revealed through wonderful performances and clever use of props, the characters are extraordinarily solid and involving. Written by Anonymous

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Comedy | Drama

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Release Date:

November 1921 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

The original Broadway production of "Miss Lulu Bett" by Zona Gale opened on December 27, 1920 at the Belmont Theater, ran for 198 performances and won the Pulitzer Prize in Drama in 1921. See more »

Quotes

Intertitle: If you want to know what kind of family lives in a house look at the dining room.
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User Reviews

 
The Family Beast of Burden
11 October 2007 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Lois Wilson (as Lulu) is the spinsterish member of the Deacon family: "The family beast of burden, whose timid soul has failed to break the bonds of family servitude." Her brother-in-law is patriarchal Theodore Roberts (as Dwight Deacon); running the house with an iron fist, he is both a dentist and a Justice of the Peace. As the latter, he accidentally marries Ms. Wilson to his visiting brother Clarence Burton (as Ninian Deacon) while they are out for dinner. Schoolteacher Milton Sills (as Neil Cornish) is also interested in Wilson; though, curiously, nobody seems to notice this for the longest time. Ethel Wales tries, unsuccessfully, to look old enough to play the family grandmother...

Lois Wilson's fine acting ability is clearly evident; at different times, she is like both Lillian Gish and Bette Davis - see, for example the scene where she "lets her hair down" upon meeting Mr. Burton (Gish), and her confrontation, finally, with Mr. Roberts (Davis). The story is ambitious: "Lulu Bett" and the other members of the Deacon household are clearly being controlled by the "Master" Deacon; and, "Lulu" is practically a slave. Yet, the various characters are shells of something larger - and their shells are not filled with enough characterization, background, or motivation to make this movie really work.

Notable as directed by Cecil's brother William deMille.

***** Miss Lulu Bett (11/13/21) William C. de Mille ~ Lois Wilson, Theodore Roberts, Milton Sills


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