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A Woman of Paris: A Drama of Fate (1923)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 4 November 1923 (USA)
A kept woman runs into her former fiancé and finds herself torn between love and comfort.

Director:

Charles Chaplin

Writer:

Charles Chaplin
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Edna Purviance ... Marie St. Clair
Clarence Geldert ... Marie's Step-Father
Carl Miller ... Jean Millet
Lydia Knott ... Jean's Mother
Charles K. French ... Jean's Father (as Charles French)
Adolphe Menjou ... Pierre Revel
Betty Morrissey Betty Morrissey ... Fifi
Malvina Polo Malvina Polo ... Paulette
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Storyline

Marie St. Clair believes she has been jilted by her artist fiance Jean when he fails to meet her at the railway station. She goes off to Paris alone. A year later, mistress of wealthy Pierre Revel, she meets Jean again. Misinterpreting events she bounces back and forth between apparent security and true love. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"You Wouldn't Understand" said the erstwhile village girl whom fate has turned into a woman of Paris when the richest bachelor in the world's gayest city pointed to her glittering gems, asking, "What more do you want? You have everything." (Print Ad- Sunday Chronicle, ((Paterson, NJ)) 2 March 1924)

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Powell said in a 1977 interview that the film had such an impact on him that he'd carried it with him throughout his career. Its themes are visible in various Powell films, and the amazing thing is that, from 1923-1976, he had only seen the film once. See more »

Quotes

Jean Millet: Well.
Marie St. Clair: Well.
His Mother: Well.
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Alternate Versions

During 1976, Chaplin was preparing a reissue of A Woman of Paris/Sunnyside but died before completion. The project was completed after his death, and the films were reissued in the United States by Kino International Corp. in 1978. This version, however, dispensed with an opening subtitle, as well as a few brief insert shots. See more »

Connections

Featured in Charlie: The Life and Art of Charles Chaplin (2003) See more »

User Reviews

Interesting Change of Pace From Chaplin
8 January 2003 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

If nothing else, you have to give Charlie Chaplin a lot of credit for taking a shot at something so different from his usual fare. (Though he himself only appears on-screen for a few seconds this time, he did almost everything else in the production.) And while "A Woman of Paris" is certainly a cut below his comedy features, it's a pretty good melodrama, and you'd have to think that with experience Chaplin could have gone on to become almost as effective with straight melodrama as he was with his sentimental comedies. It's not really surprising that after this he returned to comedy for good, but that was just to keep audiences happy, not because he couldn't do drama, since this is a decent effort.

Chaplin's own frequent lady Edna Purviance is convincing as the young woman whose tangled love affairs pull her away from her true love and into a set of tangled relationships in the empty, decadent world of the Parisian idle classes. Except for being rather contrived - there are far too many coincidences and pat developments in the plot, and they do not work as well in serious drama as they would in a comedy - the story is interesting and fairly creative. It does get a bit heavy at times, since there is very little comic relief, but Adolphe Menjou helps keep it from getting unbearably serious with a good performance as the carefree, irresponsible Pierre. He shows that even without dialogue he can make this kind of character lively and memorable.

Since it doesn't quite measure up to the standard of either the best Chaplin features or the best silent melodramas, "A Woman of Paris" may not have a niche of its own, except for its historical interest. But it's quite an interesting change of pace from Chaplin, and an above average movie that's worth seeing.


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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

USA

Language:

None | English

Release Date:

4 November 1923 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Woman of Paris: A Drama of Fate See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$351,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$11,233
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1976 release)

Sound Mix:

Mono (1978 re-release)| Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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