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The Scarlet Letter (1926)

Passed | | Drama | 8 January 1927 (USA)
After having a child out of wedlock, a young Puritan woman is pressured to reveal the name of her lover.

Director:

Victor Sjöström (as Victor Seastrom)

Writers:

Nathaniel Hawthorne (novel), Frances Marion (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Lillian Gish ... Hester Prynne
Lars Hanson ... The Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale
Henry B. Walthall ... Roger Prynne
Karl Dane ... Giles
William H. Tooker William H. Tooker ... The Governor
Marcelle Corday ... Mistress Hibbins
Fred Herzog Fred Herzog ... The Jailer
Jules Cowles ... The Beadle
Mary Hawes Mary Hawes ... Patience
Joyce Coad Joyce Coad ... Pearl
James A. Marcus ... A Sea Captain
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Storyline

In Puritan Boston, seamstress Hester Prynne is punished for playing on the Sabbath day; but kindly minister Arthur Dimmesdale takes pity on her. The two fall in love, but their relationship cannot be: Hester is already married to Roger Prynne, a physician who has been missing seven years. Dimmesdale has to go away to England; when he returns, he finds Hester pregnant with their child, and the focus of the town's censure. In a humiliating public ceremony, she is forced to don the scarlet letter A - for adultery - and wear it the rest of her life. Dimmesdale is encouraged by the church fathers to demand of Hester the person with whom she sinned. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

8 January 1927 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Letra Escarlate See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$430,290 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$665,733, 31 December 1927
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(2000 restored)

Sound Mix:

Silent

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Lillian Gish played her scenes in English, while Lars Hanson played his in Swedish. See more »

Quotes

The Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale: Hester Prynne, thou hast profaned God's holy day! Take heed, therefore! If ye sin, ye must pay - there is no escape!
See more »

Alternate Versions

In 2000, Turner Entertainment Co. copyrighted a restored version with a musical score written by and and a running time of 98 minutes. Its previous version ran 79 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Gallows (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Lilian Gish,the first thespian of the silent era...
9 February 2004 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

This is the definitive version of the classic:do yourself a favor and forget the Demi Moore one which was released a few years back.

Any actress who takes on the part will be fatally compared with Mrs Gish and the favorite thespian of MM Griffith and Sjostrom is so powerful that she would outshine anyone.At a time when an actor had to manage without words,every performance of Lilian Gish ("the wind" "orphans in the storm" ) is a tour de force in itself.Running the whole gamut of human feelings,her portrayal displays every nuance of her fragility,her desperation and her hope against hope .But I will not try to describe it:just watch yourself.

Sjostrom's directing stood the test of time hands down and the story is absorbing until the very end.

Never forget that Mrs Gish made a great come back in the talkies which culminated in her sensational old lady in "the night of the hunter" (1955)


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