The Professor dispenses the wisdom of the ages and does not make a living wage. The sons of the rich and powerful are students lacking any motivation. The next door neighbor of the ... See full summary »
Trixie Thompson concludes that the only way she could save her sister from dying of the "white plague" is by preventing the autumn leaves from falling. Little Trixie knows all this because ... See full summary »
A small town girl finds escape from her cruel home life in the arms of a handsome stranger. Soon she finds herself working as a prostitute in New Orleans, desperately clinging to the belief that he really loves her.
Nellie Bly Baker,
Written and directed by Lois Weber, "Too Wise Wives" might be most notable for its depiction of life in the twenties. The lengthy interior shots detail the arts of the time, including interior design, fashion, the fine arts, etc. In this respect, it's a real treat to see. The women drape themselves in feathers and furs, and layers of fabric. The rooms are decorated with details that overwhelm the senses and conflict with one another. Pieces of art ostentatiously festoon every wall and corner, like a residential museum. But what fun it is to see the styles of the time, including the beautiful automobiles.
Predictably, the message of the film is a cautionary moral. The personalities of two wives are contrasted. One (Mrs. Graham) knits slippers for her husband--the picture of devotion and domesticity. And unselfishness. The director wants us to place all negative traits under the umbrella of selfishness--as depicted by the other wife (Mrs. Daly)--and goes so far as to reinforce this message repeatedly in title cards. This is one of the main problems with the film; the titles over-explain when the action is enough.
Despite other tales that deal with the newfound societal freedoms of the Roaring Twenties, this is a story about propriety. Everything is subdued and damped by the manners of the times.
As a story, this film is monothematic. But as a "time capsule" it is rich with observable treasures.
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