38 user 12 critic

Coquette (1929)

Unrated | | Drama, Romance | 6 April 1929 (USA)
A flirtatious Southern belle is compromised with one of her suitors.


Sam Taylor


George Abbott (based on the stage production by), Ann Preston Bridgers (based on the stage production by) | 3 more credits »
Won 1 Oscar. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Mary Pickford ... Norma Besant
Johnny Mack Brown ... Michael Jeffery (as John Mack Brown)
Matt Moore ... Stanley Wentworth
John St. Polis ... Dr. John Besant
William Janney ... Jimmy Besant
Henry Kolker ... Jasper Carter
George Irving ... Robert Wentworth
Louise Beavers ... Julia


Norma Besant, daughter of a Southern doctor, is an incorrigible flirt and has many boys on her string. She begins to favor Michael Jeffrey, who, shiftless and hot-tempered but fundamentally honorable, is warned off by her father. When Michael returns after a long absence, the pair are innocently compromised, and Dr. Besant's old-South paternal rage brings tragedy. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Her Passionate Love for a Boy of the Hills Brings Tragedy to Two Men! A New Role for the New Mary! (Print Ad- Philadelphia Inquirer, ((Philadelphia, Penna.)) 18 May 1929) See more »


Drama | Romance


Unrated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Despite mixed reviews, it played in one Los Angeles cinema continuously from ten a.m. until midnight. See more »


Norma Besant: I'll tell you somethin' I never told any other man, ever! Just the way you are, now, you'll be the best lookin' man there. Now, will you come?
Michael Jeffery: No.
Norma Besant: Well, you're the first man I ever told that to the just didn't naturally melt away.
Michael Jeffery: I reckon I'm different from the other men - you've never told that to.
See more »


Spoofed in Twentieth Century (1934) See more »


Traditional spiritual
Arranged by Henry Thacker Burleigh (1917)
Sung in part by uncredited actor
See more »

User Reviews

Mediocre & Rather Unfortunate
1 September 2004 | by Snow LeopardSee all my reviews

It's rather unfortunate that this is the only film for which many current movie fans remember Mary Pickford, because of the neglect of silent films and because of the undue weight given to well-known but arbitrary motion picture awards. While she is often unfairly blamed for the mediocre quality of "Coquette", the fault really lies elsewhere. Without a thorough adaptation of the material to make it more suitable for the screen, hardly anyone could have performed well enough to make this much better.

The story did hold possibilities, but it's the kind of familiar, rather routine melodrama that needs interesting characters, unusual situations, or snappy dialogue to make it work. There is none of that here - only a talky and generally predictable script, which would work better as a stage play or even a radio play. Neither Pickford nor Johnny Mack Brown has much of a chance to give it life. They do their best, and they simply perform their roles as they were written. Nor is it one of the worst movies ever - it does contain some stretches of genuinely good acting, and the story is at least a little better than the warmed-over scenarios of so many recent movies.

Pickford deserves to be remembered for her many fine performances during the silent era. She could also have made top quality talking films if she had been given the chance, but she was never given roles that allowed her to use her greatest strengths. Further, in the early sound era, producers and directors were overly interested in dialogue-heavy pictures like this, which seemed impressive at the time only because talking pictures were still a novelty. Audiences of the day enjoyed them, but now they look as dated and dull as today's over-praised computer-imagery extravaganzas will look in fifty years or so. None of that is the fault of the actors and actresses of the era.

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Release Date:

6 April 1929 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Coqueta See more »


Box Office


$489,106 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Pickford Corporation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (MovieTone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

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