IMDB link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0017843
Submitted by Charles O'Brien on 2007-12-19
Charles O'Brien's comment:
An early Hitchcock feature, produced by Michael Balcon for Gainsborough Pictures. Hitchcock seems to pick up the cutting during tense dramatic moments, when he films the actors in separate shots rather than in the ensemble compositions relied upon elsewhere.
0.00: courtroom, where Lady Larita Filton is being sued for divorce on account of her adulterous relationship with painter Claude; 3.00: flashback to Claude's studio, where Larita tells sad tale of life with her abusive husband, who ultimately kills Claude; 5.00: the flashback momentarily over, we return to the courtroom scene, periodically intercut with additional flashbacks, until 14.30: jury room, where the jurors deliberate over Larita's fate; 16.30: the judge reads the verdict: Larita is guilty of "misconduct," which causes big bustle from reporters and others in the room; 18.50: Larita, aiming to avoid the press, leaves London for a Mediterranean resort, where she checks in with a fake name; Larita meets John, a young Englishman (slow cutting depicting the budding romance); 27.30: Larita rides in carriage with John, who declares his love for her; 31.20: at night, a switchboard operator is shown eavesdropping on a conversation between John and Larita (a very clever scene, done in one long take, with no titles: the operator's changes in facial expression indicate that John has proposed marriage and L. has accepted; 32.20: the newlyweds arrive at the station near John's English country home, where they will live with his family; 35.10: inside the manor, Larita meets John's family, including his dour, disapproving mother; 43.50: Mrs. Whittaker confronts her son John over his marriage to Larita; 47.40: on the polo field, Larita spies her lawyer among the fans (cutting picks up); 50.25: in the family living room, arrangements for a party are made; 59.30: Mrs. W. discovers Larita's identity as a notorious divorcee, and announces it to the family; 71.00: Larita shows up at the party (causing the cutting to pick up); 77.30: divorce court again (filmed with the same camera angles as before); Larita exits the courtroom, a divorcee once again (though it has been implied that she will likely form a couple with her lawyer). The end.
Author: Yuri Tsivian Date: 2007-12-30
Interesting. Here, too, like in other 1928 silents Charles had measured this month, there is no significant discrepancy between action shots and dialog title ASLs. Here, however, the balance is reached around 6.6 and 6.8 seconds while in other cases (Speedy, Champagne, The Last Command) the balance was struck around 4.5 or around 5.5. Is it perhaps that by the end of the silent era there was no disproportion between titles and images any more?