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Hans Adalbert Schlettow,
Irene is unhappily married to an older businessman, but very much in love with a handsome young lawyer. He doesn't want to add to her unhappiness by ruining her marriage; she is terrified of her husband's jealousy and anger. They decide to stop seeing each other, and she bides her time with Pierre, a young friend of the family who walks their dogs and is in puppy love with Irene. When Pierre is about to leave for college, he begs her for a goodbye kiss. She agrees, and who should walk in while it is happening, but her ailing and financially distraught husband... Written by
Gary Dickerson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This isn't the best Garbo silent ever made, but it was the last, and it was also the final silent film made by MGM. What makes this film good is the combination of Garbo's acting and the cinematography here. Movies like this and Sunrise make me somewhat sad that the silent film era ended, because what could be done creatively with the camera was lost from this point until the early 30's once the problems of the static camera got worked out and the novelty of sound at the expense of everything else wore off.
Garbo convincingly plays the sympathetic yet no-longer-in-love wife when in the presence of her husband (Anders Randolf), the longing lover who wishes to defy convention and just leave her marriage behind regardless of the consequences when with André Dubail (Conrad Nagel), and the knowledgeable "older" woman who is enjoying the attention she is getting when with the very young and naive Pierre Lassalle (Lew Ayres). Whenever she is alone she has no trouble conveying which of these three moods she is in. The story is a very good tale of tortured romance with a little bit of mystery thrown in towards the end, but the main attractions are the romance and the beautiful and creative shots. The only thing really annoying is the original Vitaphone score that went along with the movie. With all of the other subtle expression going on in this film, the choice of the theme song from "Romeo and Juliet" to convey the feelings between Garbo and Nagel every time they shared a scene just seemed a bit over the top.
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