Gum-chewing frizzy-haired golddigger Marie Skinner cooks up a scheme with her lover Babe Winsor, a jazz hound, to fleece a portly middle-aged real estate tycoon, William Judson. Marie moves... See full summary »
Gum-chewing frizzy-haired golddigger Marie Skinner cooks up a scheme with her lover Babe Winsor, a jazz hound, to fleece a portly middle-aged real estate tycoon, William Judson. Marie moves into Judson's apartment building and contrives to meet and seduce him, plying him with compliments, music, swoons, décolletage, and batted eyes. When his loyal wife (and their two children) see him out catting with Marie at a night club, mom's devastated and confronts him. He moves out. Babe wants Marie to sell Judson worthless bonds. Will mom commit suicide? Will sis shoot the floozy? Will pops figure out he's being a fool? Written by
Adela Rogers St. Johns published a book entitled "The Single Standard" in 1928, the same year this movie was released. It is not known if this book is related to the movie in any way. See more »
When Marie is at the barber shop, and Judson leaves his chair, she asks a man to pick up the newspaper to read Judson's news about his recent deal. After reading the news, she looks at Judson, and then the scene switches to be seen from other angle, where you can see that Marie is asking the man to pick up the newspaper again. See more »
Opening Dialogue Card:
The battle of the sexes - always being fought and never being won.
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Gold-digging Phyllis Haver (as Marie Skinner) seduces New York real estate tycoon Jean Hersholt (as William Judson), breaking up his happy marriage. After Mr. Hersholt's wife falls into a deep depression, cute and perky daughter Sally O'Neil (as Ruth) takes a gun to shoot Ms. Haver, whom the family has seen out dancing with Hersholt. Then, Ms. O'Neil finds herself prey to handsome jazz hound Don Alvarado (as Babe Winsor), who also serves as Haver's lover.
This curious film was director D.W. Griffith's re-make of his much imitated 1914 hit (presently, a "lost" film). "The Battle of the Sexes" is curious because it's rather well done, and from a period when Mr. Griffith is recalled to have been in sad decline. The film received some good notices, was a box office success, and featured some innovative work from Griffith plus cameramen Karl Struss and Billy Bitzer. Watch for a "fight" scene with Haver hurling objects at Hersholt, then dejected wife Belle Bennett's perilous walk on the couple's rooftop.
Restored in 2000, the film boasts a lively new score, compiled by Rodney Sauer and Susan Hall. The small orchestral soundtrack is excellent, and can be enjoyed on its own; but, it doesn't really match the original. "The Battle of the Sexes" has the look of a film shown with synchronized sound effects (a silent/sound hybrid, favoring the former). The original music and effects are missed. It looks like a couple of scenes went with it - there had to have been an additional encounter between O'Neil and Mr. Alvarado, and a reason why he and Hersholt arrive at Haver's with the same new hat.
If only the waiter who returned with Hersholt's "Reserved" sign could as easily bring back missing film footage...
******** The Battle of the Sexes (10/12/28) D.W. Griffith ~ Jean Hersholt, Phyllis Haver, Sally O'Neil, Don Alvarado
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