Laurence Gerard has just divorced. While leading fat lover Talandier by the nose, She meets the count Lerski, who now works as waiter but do not tell her. When she hears from her husband he... See full summary »
Country orphan Lily goes to Berlin to stay with her tippling aunt, and soon meets Richard, handsome sculptor across the street. Persuaded half-reluctantly to pose for Richard, her physical ... See full summary »
After World War I, a war hero returns to Berlin to find that there's no place for him--he has no skills other than what he learned in the army, and can only find menial, low-paying jobs. He decides to become a gigolo to lonely rich women.
Film told in flashbacks of an older man's obsession for a woman who can belong to no-one but can frustrate everyone. The backdrop is SternbergÍs surreal and fantastic Carnaval in Spain. In ... See full summary »
Josef von Sternberg
Edward Everett Horton
Many passengers on the Shanghai Express are more concerned that the notorious Shanghai Lil is on board than the fact that a civil war is going on that may make the trip take more than three... See full summary »
Josef von Sternberg
Anna May Wong
Southern France, the present. About to marry, Charles Leblanc glimpses beautiful Stascha with her autocratic older companion, Karoff. They meet shortly after on a train. Stascha confesses ... See full summary »
Four stories, humorous, romantic or dramatic, are linked by a counterfeit gold sovereign. It is made by the honest engraver in the first story, seduced by the charms of a young widow, and ... See full summary »
Laurence Gerard has just divorced. While leading fat lover Talandier by the nose, She meets the count Lerski, who now works as waiter but do not tell her. When she hears from her husband he is a waiter, she thinks Lerksi lies and throws him out... Written by
Before Herr Josef von Sternberg ( that fake von ) invented Frau Marlene Dietrich for the talkie screen and made her one of the most important icons for the cinephile masses, the German actress had already had a short silent career.
"Ich Küsse Ihre Hand, Madame" ( I Kiss Your Hand, Madame ) (1929) was one of the last Frau Dietrich silent works done just before the dawn of the talkies and the doom of the Silent Era. The film was even influenced by this terrible invention and even worse, by those common love songs. In spite of being a silent oeuvre the film included a sound sequence wherein Herr Count Lerski (Herr Harry Liedtke), a Russian guard-officer now retrained by the hotel industry as a waiter, sang the popular title song of the film ( although the actor was dubbed by another actor who apparently had a better voice than that fake count.) to the ambitious divorcée Frau Laurence ( Frau Marlene Dietrich ).
The film was directed by Robert Land and works pretty well as a German sophisticated high comedy, moderately hilarious ( it is Teutonic film production, after all ) sophisticated and elegant at the same time. It tells of the misunderstandings involving a beautiful divorcée and the men around her; her admiring lawyer ( Herr Charle Puffy ), her ex-husband ( Herr Pierre de Guingand ) and the count/waiter Lerski . Even though this is a German film the background is Paris since that city is better suited for romance than Berlin which excelled in parades and riots.
Frau Marlene Dietrich was very popular and highly recognized during those years in the silent German world. Herr Land and the great cinematography of Herr Carl Drews und Herr Gotthardt Wolf take full advantage of her particular magnetism; for this reason Frau Dietrich shines in every close-up or long shot in which she appears, fascinating the camera with her peculiar cold German charms. Her counterpart, the (also German) star Herr Harry Liedtke is also given his due and plays his part perfectly while there are efficient performances in the supporting roles; the fat and innocent lawyer and Frau Dietrich's bitter but still infatuated ex-husband stand out.
"Ich Küsse Ihre Hand, Madame" is a very careful film production which has exquisite set design ( very conceptual, too modern for a German count ) which includes the outdoor night scenes of the Paris high life. Our heroine lives an unconcerned and foolish life full of prejudices, as Herr Graf Lerski soon discovers. The film is a typical classic German comedy with misunderstandings, a complicated love affair ( with a happy ending, natürlich! ), elegant scenery, gorgeous costumes and a free-and-easy atmosphere; that is to say, it exemplifies some of the essential precepts of the particular Decalogue of that film genre.
And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this German Count must kiss the shapely digits of a beautiful Madame- who obviously isn't a Teutonic fat and rich heiress
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