The story takes place in medieval France. Poet-rogue Francois Villon, sentenced to hang by King Louis XI for writing derogatory verses about him, is offered a temporary reprieve. His ... See full summary »
Circa 1861, Angelina, ruling countess of an Italian principality, is at a loss when invaded by a Hungarian army. Her lookalike ancestress Francesca, who saved a similar situation 300 years ... See full summary »
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
Minutes before her wedding to Duke Otto Von Seibenheim, Countess Helene Mara flees, on a whim, to Monte Carlo, where she hopes her luck will save her poor financial state. There, Count Rudolph Farriere is taken by her beauty, but she rebuffs him, not even looking at him. Assuming the guise of a hairdresser, he finally succeeds in seeing her, night and morning. Sparks fly, and love ensues - but can she love a lowly hairdresser? As her finances worsen though, the Duke arrives, and his money and social status seem even more enticing. Shunning Rudolph, will her story follow the operatic "unhappy ending", or can she have it all?Written by
Loosely based on the Booth Tarkington novel (1900) that was also source for the Rudolph Valentino drama Monsieur Beaucaire (1924) and the Bob Hope comedy Monsieur Beaucaire (1946). And there really is an English operetta (1918) based on the book, composed by André Messager, later adapted to French. It looks like recordings are only available for the French version. As of this writing (2017), both movies are available on DVD, but Valentino's looks like it's in public domain. See more »
Jeanette MacDonald is referred to as a blonde early on in the dialogue. She was actually a redhead, and no attempt was made to lighten her hair to make her look blonde. Her hair photographed the dark grey red hair usually reproduced as on the black-and-white film used in 1930. See more »
Countess Helene Mara:
oh, oh, oh, oh... ohohohoo... that feels good... oh,oh... that feels even better... you must have electricity in your hands. I've never felt like this before! Gorgeous!
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102: Monte Carlo (1930) - released 8/27/1930, viewed 6/23/08.
KEVIN: I feel compelled to keep this brief, because I don't think this movie will stick with me. I didn't hate it, I just couldn't fall in love with it like I usually do with Ernst Lubitsch. There were plenty of enjoyable moments to keep me watching until the end, but I found the love story somewhat confusing. I blame this on Jack Buchanan as the male lead. His character is not only a liar, but a manipulator and stalker, and I must say there wasn't anything terribly charming about him. Buchanan played him just too creepy for me to root for him. Jeanette MacDonald was excellent, as usual, but her growing infatuation with this creep was what really confused me. I suspect when we've watched all of Lubitsch's other hits, this one will not rank so high.
DOUG: Only Ernst Lubitsch could make such a breezy, likable comedy with such despicable characters. Jeanette MacDonald plays the flighty, naïve Countess Helene, who ditches her wedding to head off somewhere fun and ends up in Monte Carlo. Jack Buchanen plays Count Rudolph, a total creep who decides to court Helene by getting hired as her barber and stalking her at every turn. Claud Allister plays Prince Otto, the dim-witted older man Helene is set to marry. The proceedings are amusing in that fun Lubitsch kind of way; everyone's just on the edge of crazy throughout and are all the more enjoyable for it. The love story is rather dated though; I found Rudy to be an obsessive manipulative loon, scheming his way into her bedroom and saving locks of her hair. Because it's Lubitsch, it's all fluffy and lighthearted, but this is maybe my least favorite of his films so far.
Last film viewed: The Divorcée (1930). Last film chronologically: The Big House (1930). Next film viewed: The Criminal Code (1930). Next film chronologically: Animal Crackers (1930).
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