A messy divorce leaves Mrs. Leslie Carter shunned by Chicago society for being an adulteress and forbidden from having custody of her son. She's determined to return to her hometown in a ... See full summary »
Dorothy Hunter is an heiress of untold wealth. She believes no one will love her for herself and not for her money, so she pretends to be her secretary Sylvia while Sylvia pretends to be ... See full summary »
A piano teacher believes that her fiancé, a cellist, was killed on the battlefield. When he returns alive, they marry, but are menaced and threatened by a wealthy, egotistical composer she started dating on the rebound.
Marianne de Beaumaniour is on her way to New Orleans from Paris to inspect the plantation she inherited from her uncle. On the ship with her are bondsmen, that are to be sold for slavery. ... See full summary »
Robert Z. Leonard,
W.S. Van Dyke
A wealthy but neurotic Southern belle finds herself trapped in the hideout of a gang of vicious bootleggers. The gang's leader lusts after her, and is determined not to let anything stand in the way of his having her.
Jack La Rue
When lovely and virtuous governess Henriette Deluzy comes to educate the children of the debonair Duc de Praslin, a royal subject to King Louis-Philippe and the husband of the volatile and ... See full summary »
Nicole Picot is working as a model in a Paris dress salon when she is picked by Stefan Orloff to help him convince a wealthy investor that he is well connected. She is to wear an expensive ... See full summary »
Pretty Bobby Halevy loves Rims Rosson, a dreamer and inventor without much going for him. Rims has a scheme of going to Manila to turn hemp into silk and become rich. But when one of her ... See full summary »
Rodney has just married the often engaged Juliette and they are both ready to leave on their honeymoon. But Clara show up and Rodney sneaks out to talk to her. Clara is blackmailing Rodney,... See full summary »
A greedy woman turns in her husband, a jewel thief, for the reward. Her husband's friend, a detective, adopts the couple's child and raises her as his own. Eighteen years later the husband,... See full summary »
Edwin L. Marin
A messy divorce leaves Mrs. Leslie Carter shunned by Chicago society for being an adulteress and forbidden from having custody of her son. She's determined to return to her hometown in a few years as a success and with enough money to fight to get her son back. In order to realize her plans, she heads to New York with ambitions of being a great actress. Despite having no stage training, producer David Belasco becomes attracted to her and becomes intent on making her a star, as well as winning her heart. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <firstname.lastname@example.org>
None of the Broadway plays mentioned in the movie were performed by Mrs. Leslie Carter. Her Broadway debut was in a play called "The Ugly Duckling" in 1890, not "The Way of Beauty." Her second play was "Zaza," not "The Lady From France." It is not known why the names of her plays were changed. See more »
David Belasco is not a forgotten name - he played too important a role in Broadway from 1880 - 1931 (when he died). He was a prolific playwright, and two of his works still retain the stage - although as operas (MADAME BUTTERFLY and THE GIRL OF THE GOLDEN WEST, both composed by Puccini). But his real forte was directing and producing, for he got the most out of his stars. As Claude Rains says in this film, when asked if he could save Mrs. Leslie Carter's acting ability, "I'm David Belasco! I can make a telegraph pole look good!"
Belasco was not flawless. He was an egomaniac, who insisted on total obedience to his direction if anyone sought him as an acting mentor (as Mrs. Carter did). He was also determined to be memorable as a personality, going about in a suit reminiscent of the Roman Catholic Church (he basically dressed like a priest). While he did improve the acting of his period, his taste in drama tended to be of the melodramas and sentimental play variety. Brooks Atkinson (in his book, Broadway) dismissed him as a ham and poseur, but he was better in bringing a professional structure to acting. Too frequently in that period actors were not as prepared or controlled to give their audiences their money's worth of good acting.
Mrs. Leslie Carter was a minor socialite from the midwest who wanted to go on stage. In the movie she is played (rather well) by Miriam Hopkins. Mrs. Carter got involved in a messy divorce from her husband, in which she lost custody of her only son. Under Belasco's tutalage she became one of the leading female stars of her age. She did try to resume her relationship with the son, but she was so involved in building her art and stage reputation her son was nearly ten when she saw him again. The relationship was never resumed. As for her career it blossomed, but she decided to remarry. Belasco expected to be consulted and wasn't, so he broke with her.
After a decade of floundering, a rapproachment with Belasco was arranged, and her career resumed it's previous success.
As an interesting slice of theatrical history THE LADY WITH RED HAIR (which, ironically, is a black and white film) is worth watching. Rains and Hopkins give their typically best work in their lead roles. I would definitely recommend the film.
13 of 14 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?