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Herr Sidney Franklin was one of those silent film directors whose work is a good example of craftsmanship and style. Unfortunately, his films have not gotten the attention they deserve which is surprising since he worked with many of the best actors and actresses in those silent days.
"Her Sister From Paris" (1925) is a good example of what this Herr Graf is talking about; a stylized comedy that works pretty well although at first sight it might seem a predictable and not very original film.
The film tells the story of Herr Joseph Weyringer and his wife ( Herr Ronald Colman and Constance Talmadge respectively ), they are in a not very amicable Austrian marriage and continually arguing with each other. The last big quarrel between them causes Herr Joseph's wife, Helen, to make the decision to leave her husband and go home to mother ( a dream come true for any commoner or aristocrat man! ). That same day, Helen's twin sister arrives in Vienna from the city of Paris where she is a very popular and fashionable artist known as "La Perry". She will help her sister with her disastrous marriage, planning that her sister impersonates her in order to win back her husband with the last Parisian charms and techniques.
With such a plot, obviously "Her Sister From Paris" is full of funny misunderstandings and confusing situations in which the changing female roles of the main characters ( Frau Constance Talmadge in a double role for the same expensive price ) create seductive scenes ( including an excessively and impudent kiss, too long by aristocratic standards ). The art of flirting is well demonstrated and we learn how a frustrated Austrian wife can transform herself from a dull housewife to a gorgeous modernen vamp and thus save her marriage by making it exciting again.
The actors are splendid; Herr Ronald Colman is perfect as the baffled husband willing to have an affair with his own sister-in-law though later he will feel guilt and torment and discover he does really love his wife, even though she has deceived him (a common situation world wide). Frau Constance Talmadge is equally good transforming herself from a vulgar bourgeoisie Austrian wife to a gorgeous Parisian vamp, a proper flapper of the time. No doubt she was greatly helped in her performance by Herr Franklin who was well known in those silent times as a film director capable of achieving excellent performances from his actresses although it must be said that Frau Talmadge was already a very important and successful comedy actress as can be seen in this deliciously wicked comedy.
And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this German Count is waiting for a rich heiress' even richer sister from Saarbrücken.
Herr Graf Ferdinand Von Galitzien http://ferdinandvongalitzien.blogspot.com
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