6.6/10
1,196
25 user 14 critic

The Painted Veil (1934)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 23 November 1934 (USA)
A wife neglected by her husband, a medical researcher in China, falls in love with a dashing diplomatic attaché.

Writers:

John Meehan (screen play), Salka Viertel (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Greta Garbo ... Katrin
Herbert Marshall ... Walter Fane
George Brent ... Jack Townsend
Warner Oland ... General Yu
Jean Hersholt ... Herr Koerber
Bodil Rosing ... Frau Koerber
Katharine Alexander ... Mrs. Townsend
Cecilia Parker ... Olga
Soo Yong Soo Yong ... Amah
Forrester Harvey ... Waddington
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Adair Robert Adair ... Polo Player (scenes deleted)
Mariska Aldrich Mariska Aldrich ... German Teacher (scenes deleted)
Maidena Armstrong Maidena Armstrong ... German (scenes deleted)
Billy Bevan ... Bridegroom (scenes deleted)
Beulah Bondi ... Frau Koerber (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

In Austria, Katrin is lonely after her sister's marriage and she agrees to marry her father's research associate Dr. Walter Fane. Fane takes her to China but constantly ignors her in favour of his medical research. Lonely Katrin has an affair with Jack Townsend of the British Embassy. When it is discovered by Walter he becomes very bitter. Fane travels to fight a cholera epidemic and Katrin goes with him and helps. They grow closer together than ever before but Walter is knifed in a riot incited by the burning of a cholera infested town. Now their new found happiness will depend on Walter's survival. Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Do not pass love by...It may never come again! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 November 1934 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Det brogede slør See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$947,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A church facade was added to the standing set known as the French District at MGM. The church became a permanent part of the set and stood until the lot was cleared in the 1970Kirk Kerkorian took control. See more »

Goofs

A box is marked "Scotch Whiskey". The proper spelling is "Whisky". See more »

Quotes

Katrin Koerber Fane: Oh, Missy, Master telephone. He say very busy. So sorry.
Amah: Not coming home for dinner?
Katrin Koerber Fane: No, Missy. He's very busy. All time - busy, busy. Maybe tomorrow, not busy?
See more »

Connections

Version of The Seventh Sin (1957) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
Played as background music in the wedding scene
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Garbo after the code
25 October 2009 | by AlsExGalSee all my reviews

This film has some rather fantastic elements about it, mainly that Greta Garbo would be playing a spinster, and that having several suitors - as her mother claims that she has - she would hastily accept a marriage proposal from someone for whom she has absolutely no passion. In this case it is Herbert Marshall playing both an unloved husband and a devoted medical researcher into the cause and prevention of cholera. The other fantastic element is trying to believe that there is any chemistry between Garbo and "the other man, George Brent. Brent - who was so wonderful with Kay Francis, Bette Davis, and Ruth Chatterton - is here no more attractive than the husband he is trying to supplant. He has all the chemistry of a cardboard box.

The best part of the film is once Marshall realizes he has been cuckolded and makes an ultimatum to his faithless wife. He has just learned of a raging cholera epidemic in inland China and must go there and try to get it under control. His wife can stay behind if Brent's character agrees to get a divorce, in which case she can also have one. If he does not agree to this, then Garbo must come along with him on his expedition and thus be exposed to the most extreme danger.

This was one of Garbo's first films after the production code came into effect earlier in 1934. There were so many limits put on what could be said and shown and even insinuated that it really put a damper on what was supposed to be a pretty torrid love triangle. Trying to perform in a moral straight jacket is probably what really cost this film its potential edge. I'd recommend this for Garbo completists only.


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