Liliom, a merry-go-round barker at a Budapest amusement park, becomes enamored of Julie, a servant girl, and though under the influence of Madame Muskat, a sideshow entrepreneur, he marries... See full summary »



(play) (as Franz Molnar), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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Credited cast:
Mildred Van Dorn ...
Hollinger (as Guinn Williams)
Lillian Elliott ...
Louise (as Dawn O'Day)
Linzman (as James Marcus)
Harvey Clark ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Frankie Genardi


Liliom, a merry-go-round barker at a Budapest amusement park, becomes enamored of Julie, a servant girl, and though under the influence of Madame Muskat, a sideshow entrepreneur, he marries the girl. Although he has not been a good provider, Liliom is spurred into action by the discovery that his wife is pregnant and eventually is influenced by his friend Buzzard, to rob a bank cashier so that he can take Julie to America.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Charles Farrell in his greatest role



Parents Guide:





Release Date:

5 October 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Frank Borzage's Liliom by Franz Molnar  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film was once considered lost, but has since been found, restored, and put on DVD. See more »


Louise: He hit me. I heard the sound of it. But it didn't hurt, Mother. It felt just like a kiss... Tell me Mother, has anyone ever hit you without hurting you in the least?
Julie: Yes dear. It's happened to me too.
Louise: Can anyone hit you real hard and loud, without hurting you at all?
Julie: Yes, dear. It's possible for someone to beat you and beat you and beat you, and not hurt you at all.
See more »


Version of Liliom (1919) See more »


Dream of Romance
Music by Richard Fall
Lyrics by Marcella Gardner
See more »

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User Reviews

Good subject-director fit
11 January 2016 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

Molnar's dreamlike tragedy-fantasy is, as another poster said, just the meat for Frank Borzage, and he invests the material with a typically deft, warm hand. Those of us who love "Carousel" (I think it's the greatest musical ever written) will be struck by how similar they are, with nearly identical dialog in some spots, from a translation by Benjamin Glazer (though the translation is also rumored to be by one Lorenz Hart). The expressionistic, Murnau-like sets fit well, though they're illogical--would Liliom and Julie really have a picture window looking directly out on the amusement park? I'd give it a higher rating, but there's a fatal flaw: Charles Farrell, good-looking as he is, hasn't the requisite swagger for Liliom, and his high nasal voice isn't suitable. Rose Hobart is a suitably quiet, introspective Julie, and there's wonderful work from a young Lee Tracy. The Budapest setting isn't altogether realized, but there's some lovely, Kalman-like scoring, and the surviving print is, for its day, excellent.

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