Garbo is radiant, but her star doesn't shine brightly enough to overcome the dim script in this movie that cost more than $400,000 to produce, back when that sum went a long way in Hollywood. There were several legal problems caused by the movie, based on a story by James Forbes taken from
Alphonse Daudet's Sappho. The difficulty came about because European copyright laws are different from those in the US, and, while the story was in the public domain in the States, it was still protected in many countries across the pond. Pathe successfully sued MGM for infringement and the film
was shelved until an agreement was reached. It was all a tempest in a teapot, because the film sank faster than the Titanic. Garbo is a Parisian model who serves as inspiration to a painter, a writer, a composer, and a sculptor. She falls in love with Montgomery, a conservative lad who is studying
for work in the French consul service. When he learns that she has had many men before him, he leaves her. Her life spirals downward and she is broke. Montgomery again encounters Garbo and buys her a home in the suburbs. But that's all he'll do for her, as he is about to marry another woman.
Garbo's pal, Morley, jumps out a window when her lover, Stone (an old lech), leaves her. Now Montgomery decides that his career in the service is piffle compared to his love for Garbo, so he goes to her house and discovers her with another ex-lover who is asking that she return with him to Paris.
Undaunted by this, Montgomery will still be happy to take her back into his arms. Montgomery falls asleep and Garbo, who senses that she'll never change, does a "`tis a far, far better thing I do now" and writes Montgomery a "Dear Robert" letter before she goes back to Paris and her dissolute
life. A tiresome picture that is only highlighted by Garbo's face, for which it seems the camera must have been invented.
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- Rating: NR
- Review: Garbo is radiant, but her star doesn't shine brightly enough to overcome the dim script in this movie that cost more than $400,000 to produce, back when that sum went a long way in Hollywood. There were several legal problems caused by the movie, based on… (more)