In 18th-Century Russia, the Czar, Paul, is surrounded by murderous plots and trusts only Count Pahlen. Pahlen wishes to protect his friend, the mad king, but because of the horror of the ... See full summary »
In a Swiss Village in 1806, the fiery Marcus and the local clergyman's niece Ciglia are passionately in love. Unfortunately, after getting drunk during a celebration, Marcus is seduced by his aggressive admirer Pia, who uses the encounter to force him into marrying her. Heart-broken, Ciglia tries to forget him by marrying her own persistent admirer, Lorenz. Able to be faithful in deed but not thought, the two pine for each other, inspiring jealousy in their respective spouses. And once Lorenz decides to find a way to force Marcus out of town for good, it seems the relationship between Marcus and Ciglia can only end in tragedy.Written by
Eternal Love (1929) is not the film for those who seek originality. The story of ill-fated lovers in the Alps hits every melodramatic beat, from forced marriages to scheming jealous admirers. But it makes up for this flaw with tender performances from John Barrymore and Camilla Horn, who elevate the tired story and archetypal characters to a higher place through their chemistry and yearning. They make this small-scale romantic tragedy feel almost operatic at times, and their fate will leave you sobbing by the end.
Mona Rico also gives a fine performance as the promiscuous and wild Pia, who seeks to possess Barrymore at any cost. Even though her character is unlikable and mean, she has great charisma. It is a shame she never became a star.
EL is not a great piece of cinema, but it is a sweet, skillfully made melodrama that lovers of silent film might like to check out.
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