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When a Man Loves (1927)

Passed | | History, Romance | 21 August 1927 (USA)
A nobleman studying for the priesthood abandons his vocation in 18th Century France when he falls in love with a beautiful, but reluctant, courtesan.

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Cast

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Sam De Grasse ...
Holmes Herbert ...
Stuart Holmes ...
Bertram Grassby ...
Tom Santschi ...
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Storyline

Fabien des Grieux, a divinity student, comes to the rescue of a beautiful girl, Manon Lescaut, when her brother tries to "sell" her to the lecherous Comte Guillot de Morfontaine. Fabien and Manon fall in love and he abandons his priestly ambitions. But de Morfontaine has no intention of giving up his desire to possess Manon. She again falls into his clutches. Fabien, borrowing on his father's wealth, transforms himself into a gentleman gambler and moves into court society. But there he discovers that Manon is endangered not only by the cruel de Morfontaine, but by the King of France himself. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

History | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

21 August 1927 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Manon Lescaut  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TCM print) (2006 restoration)

Sound Mix:

(Vitaphone) (musical score and sound effects)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After "The End" appears on the screen, the entire Vitaphone Symphony Orchestra and its conductor (Herman Heller) appears on the screen, partly in closeup, for about 15 seconds. The New York Times reviewer of 4 February 1927 noted that the Vitaphone synchronization process was so good that he, and probably most of the audience, had forgotten that there was no orchestra in the pit. When the orchestra and conductor were shown onscreen, the surprised audience loudly cheered. See more »

Goofs

Noble Johnson's character is termed "An Apache," a French word which would imply he was a brutal pimp. That term did not come into use until the early 20th Century. See more »

Quotes

André Lescaut: [to the Apache] She happens to be my sister, good comrade - and much too frail to please a robust fellow like you.
See more »

Connections

Version of Manon Lescaut (1914) See more »

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User Reviews

 
When Barrymore Loves Costello
13 May 2008 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

In an old French cathedral town, during the reign of Louis XV, devoted churchman John Barrymore (as Chevalier Fabien des Grieux) is studying to become a Priest. One May morning, virginal Dolores Costello (as Manon Lescaut) arrives at the musty convent, like "a flower freshly plucked from the countryside"; when Mr. Barrymore sees Ms. Costello, the seeds of romance are firmly planted. Meanwhile, Costello's scheming brother Warner Oland (as André Lescaux) decides to prostitute sister Costello. Barrymore overhears Mr. Oland's plotting, and whisks Costello off to Paris. Eventually, Costello feels the lure of jewels and pretty clothes; and, Barrymore is torn between lust and the Lord.

Sheer nonsense, but extremely well-produced - firstly, Alan Crosland's "When a Man Loves" is another great opportunity to see star lovers Barrymore and Costello (who would soon marry off-screen). Oland and the man he sells Costello to, Sam de Grasse (as Monsieur Guillot de Morfontaine), head up a delightful supporting cast. Look out for a hilariously over-painted Bertram Grassby (as Le Duc de Richelieu), Tom Santschi sneeringly captaining the convict boat, and pretty prisoner Myrna Loy. The convict ship trip ending, with its swelling Vitaphone soundtrack, and Barrymore going ballistic... all fantastic. Barrymore's performance becomes amazing. Don't desert the ship - keep watching until the exciting ending payoff.

******** When a Man Loves (2/3/27) Alan Crosland ~ John Barrymore, Dolores Costello, Warner Oland


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