22 user 6 critic

The Taming of the Shrew (1929)

Taming of the Shrew (original title)
Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 30 November 1929 (USA)
In sixteenth century Padua, Hortensio loves Bianca, the youngest daughter of Baptista. But Baptista will not allow the two to get married until his eldest daughter, the extremely headstrong... See full summary »


Sam Taylor


William Shakespeare (play), Sam Taylor (adaptation)




Credited cast:
Mary Pickford ... Katherine
Douglas Fairbanks ... Petruchio
Edwin Maxwell ... Baptista
Joseph Cawthorn ... Gremio
Clyde Cook ... Grumio
Geoffrey Wardwell Geoffrey Wardwell ... Hortensio
Dorothy Jordan ... Bianca
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Frankie Genardi Frankie Genardi


In sixteenth century Padua, Hortensio loves Bianca, the youngest daughter of Baptista. But Baptista will not allow the two to get married until his eldest daughter, the extremely headstrong Katherine, is betrothed. This task seems impossible because of Katherine's shrewish demeanor. They believe their prayers have been answered with the arrival from Verona of the lusty Petruchio, whose father has just passed, leaving him to travel the world and marry. Having not yet met her, Petruchio agrees to court Katherine when he is told of her beauty and wit. Petruchio is even more excited at the prospect of marrying this wildcat of a woman after meeting her. Katherine will have none of it, even if it means her sister's spinsterhood, but has no choice but to marry him. Beyond the fact of the marriage itself, Katherine is even more irked by Petruchio's less than conventional behavior at the ceremony and post ceremony bridal feast. Each starts to play what they consider sly games of oneupsmanship ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TOGETHER! MARY Pickford and DOUGLAS Fairbanks in an adaptation of SHAKEPEARE'S "Taming o f the Shrew" (print ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Lindsey Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - June 14, 1930) See more »


Comedy | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Douglas Fairbanks' and Mary Pickford's marriage had deteriorated so badly by the time they made this film that many onlookers said that Fairbanks exaggerated Petruchio's harsh treatment towards Katharine in order to take out his own frustrations on Pickford. See more »


[last lines]
Petruchio: Ha, ha, ha! There's a Wife. Come on, and kiss me, Kate!... Drink!
See more »

Alternate Versions

After many years out of circulation, the film was re-released in 1966 in a new cut supervised by Mary Pickford herself. New sound effects were added throughout, much of the voice dubbing was enhanced with newly available technology, and seven minutes were cut from the initial print. This re-released version is the only version now available on DVD or VHS. See more »


Version of Beware of Eve (1962) See more »

User Reviews

Not Shakespeare But Not Bad
17 June 2005 | by drednmSee all my reviews

Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks star in this bowdlerized version the the Shakespeare play. This was Fairbanks' full talkie debit and Pickford's followup to her talkie debut in Coquette, which won her an Oscar. Hollywood legend has it that this film was a huge flop--not true. While not a resounding success, it did make money. It was the marriage between the 2 superstars that was flopping. Their careers were also nearing their end as well: Pickford was to make only 3 more films; Fairbanks made 4. What hurts The Taming of the Shrew most is that there are long silent sequences, sequences where director Sam Taylor allows the stars to mug at each other rather than talk. But when the stars talk, the film is fine. Both are good actors (stage trained), but I guess they just didn't trust the new medium of sound. Geoffrey Wardwell is a handsome Hortensio, and Edwin Maxwell is good the the father. But Dorothy Jordan as Bianca has like 2 words to say and is in hardly any scenes. Jordan is best remembered as Marie Dressler's "daughter" in Min and Bill. I'm sure the DVD version I saw is the re-release from 1966 that had new music added and some judicious cutting. There are several instances when actors are mouthing words, but nothing is heard. Nevertheless this is a charming film with 2 of the biggest stars of the era and wonderful sets. The opening scene of the city street is excellent. This is the second film I'm seen where Mary Pickford wields a whip. The other was The Pride of the Clan (1917).

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 22 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »






Release Date:

30 November 1929 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Taming of the Shrew See more »


Box Office


$504,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed