"Der Geiger von Florenz", film directed by Herr Paul Czinner in the silent year of 1926, tells the story of Renée, a spoiled youngster who idolizes her father and for this reason she can't stand her father's second wife, who loves her husband too.
Due to conflict between daughter and stepmother, Renée finally is put in a Swiss ladies' boarding school in order to calm her down. However, the possessive teenager is bored in Switzerland, doesn't behave correctly and is punished for her faults. She finally decides that it is time to run away from there and go home dressed up as a boy . However, since she has no documents identifying her as a boy, she is unable to cross the Italian border and return home.
A painter discovers the "boy" in the streets and decides "he" is a perfect model for his painting titled violinist of Florence". The painting becomes a big success. Due to the close friendship among the painter and disguised Renée, some complications develop, especially when the painter wants to give her a rub down after her bath. When Renéé's father sees a newspaper illustration of the painting,. he recognizes his daughter and goes to Florence to get Renée himself. However, the painter does not want to be parted from his model ( even though he didn't get to rub her down in the bath ). Obviously, the man has an eyesight problem but finally he discovers the truth and asks Renée's father for her hand.
The principal problem of this film is that while Dame Elisabeth Bergner, as Renée, might be able to fool a Italian painter who needs glasses she could never trick an old aristocratic German Count. Dame Berger is too much feminine to be a boy and too old to be a teenager, so due to such inconsistencies, the film crumbles. Fortunately the Renée's strict father is performed by Herr Conrad Veidt who gives the film enough authority and seriousness to render the story inoffensive and simple, overlooking the more malicious undertones in the oeuvre that would be perfect for a film with such a plot.
And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this German Count must adjust his monocle in order to see things clearly.
Herr Graf Ferdinand Von Galitzien http://ferdinandvongalitzien.blogspot.com/
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