Lil works for the Legendre Company and causes Bill to divorce Irene and marry her. She has an affair with businessman Gaerste and uses him to force society to pay attention to her. She has ... See full summary »
Ruby falls in love with small-time con man Eddie. During a botched blackmail scheme, Eddie accidentally kills the man they were setting up. Eddie takes off and Ruby is sent to a reformatory for two years.
Fisherman Dutch marries cannery worker Hattie. He quits his poorly paid job to concentrate on getting better working conditions as union leader. Unfortunately, the union members disagree ... See full summary »
Millicent Jordan is pre-occupied with the plans she is making for a high-class dinner party. Her husband Oliver is in failing health, and he is also worried because someone is trying to buy up the stock in his shipping business - even his old friend Carlotta wants to sell her stock. Hoping to get help from businessman Dan Packard, he persuades Millicent, against her wishes, to invite Packard and his wife to the dinner. As Oliver's problems get worse, Millicent is increasingly quick-tempered because the plans for the party are not going smoothly. As the time for the dinner approaches, it appears that the hosts and the guests will all have plenty on their minds. Written by
Bravely, it seems, John Barrymore--who notably struggled with chronic alcoholism that would lead to his death at age 60 in 1942--plays the has-been actor Larry Renault who was also addicted to the bottle. And just like his character Renault, he was in the death throes of a third marriage, one that would end within a year. See more »
In the opening scene, Millicent tells Oliver, "I see your precious Carlotta Vance arrived yesterday on the Europa." Later, that same day during Carlotta's visit to Oliver's office, she says'"I've been in New York four days and I'm lost." See more »
I happened across this film today and thoroughly enjoyed it. There is much to be praised in this film, as most of the previous reviews have detailed, so I won't go on long about it. (Though I'd never seen or heard of Marie Dressler before and now I have to find some of her other movies -- anyone else think she resembles Lois Smith?)
What was remarkable to me about the film was its timelessness. So many of the problems and situations embedded in the plot can be found in the headlines of today's newspapers and tabloids. Of course economic downturns, adultery, and social-climbing are common fodder for movies, but it is unusual for classic films to go into some of the nasty details without becoming melodramatic; they describe sexual addiction, for heaven's sake! I've never seen humanity so realistically portrayed in a classic film before (despite the moments that some would call "over-acting") and so this movie made me feel more connected to the past than I have ever before.
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