8.0/10
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37 user 27 critic

Flesh and the Devil (1926)

Childhood friends are torn apart when one of them marries the woman the other once fiercely loved.

Director:

Clarence Brown

Writers:

Benjamin Glazer (screen play) (as Benjamin F. Glazer), Hermann Sudermann (from the novel "The Undying Past" by) | 1 more credit »
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In 1 theater near Ashburn VA US [change]

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Gilbert ... Leo von Harden
Greta Garbo ... Felicitas
Lars Hanson ... Ulrich von Eltz
Barbara Kent ... Hertha
William Orlamond ... Uncle Kutowski
George Fawcett ... Pastor Voss
Eugenie Besserer ... Leo's Mother
Marc McDermott ... Count von Rhaden (as Marc MacDermott)
Marcelle Corday ... Minna
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Storyline

Leo and Ulrich are life long friends. Home, on leave from their military training, Leo sees the beautiful Felicitas at the railroad station. Awed by her beauty, they meet again at the ball and quietly leave together. In her room, her husband, about whom she has neglected to inform Leo, comes in and challenges Leo to a duel. The duel is done, the Count is killed and Felicitas is a widow. Leo, however, is 'requested' to serve 5 years in Africa and he tells Ulrich to watch over Felicitas while he is gone. After 3 years, Ulrich is able to get a pardon for Leo and all that Leo thinks about on the way home is Felicitas. When he arrives, he learns that Felicitas has married Ulrich. Felicitas likes that Ulrich is rich and she never told Ulrich the truth about Leo and her. Leo is crushed and does not visit them which saddens Ulrich as he does not know the reason why. Leo tries to stay away from her, but Felicitas uses every opportunity to tempt him to return to her as her lover. She creating a... Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Release Date:

25 December 1926 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El demonio y la carne See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$373,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$603,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$658,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1988 sound)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Felicitas was first conceived for Lillian Gish, but at the time she was getting $1 million per picture. The role was assigned to the recently-hired Greta Garbo, who was contracted at $450/week. See more »

Goofs

When Leo is talking to Felicitas on the bench in the park and tells her that he must go to Africa, the position of the collar of his overcoat repeatedly changes from pulled up to flat. See more »

Quotes

Leo von Harden: Who... are... you?
See more »

Alternate Versions

An alternate ending (included on the "Garbo Silents" DVD release of 2005) continues on from Leo and Ulrich embracing to show Leo deciding to strike up a relationship with Hertha. According to Garbo biographer Barry Paris (speaking on the DVD commentary track), this happy ending was shot by the director under protest. See more »

Connections

Edited into Hollywood Burn (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Flesh and the Devil Theme
(1926) (uncredited)
Music by Frank Owens
See more »

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User Reviews

A Fine Cast Makes It a Good Melodrama
4 April 2006 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

The fine cast makes this melodrama work, and turns a rather routine plot idea into a good and sometimes memorable movie. John Gilbert and Lars Hanson are a good combination as the male leads, and Greta Garbo is convincing as always, as the woman at the center of everything. Clarence Brown's direction also contains some good touches.

Gilbert and Hanson work well as the two lifelong friends who fall in love with the same woman. Gilbert's more passionate, hot-blooded character forms a believable and interesting contrast to Hanson's innocently earnest portrayal of his loyal, unsuspecting friend. Garbo's character is treated roughly at times by the story and by some of the other characters, but she more than rises to the occasion, and as she often does, she makes what could have been a stereotyped love interest into a complex and sometimes tormented character.

Barbara Kent also does well in a smaller role, and her character (the younger sister of Hanson's character) is used effectively at some important moments that help develop the main characters. Brown adds a lighter tone to a couple of sequences when suitable, and he provides a good pace. Given the fairly simple story, it might run a bit long, but otherwise it is well-crafted and effective.


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