During World War I, a French girl is romanced by an American doughboy even though she is promised to a French soldier who is fighting at the front. When the French soldier returns from the war blind, she realizes that her heart is really with the Yank and she follows him to “Second Forty Street” in New York. Musical numbers include “Just You, Just Me.” —IMDb
Robert Z. “Pop” Leonard was a highly successful contract director at MGM, to such extent that critical appreciation of his work is practically nonexistent or of a negative kind. Nevertheless, the transparency of Leonard’s work conceals a skilled and talented artisan of the highest order, and several of his films rate as classics and remain popular favorites decades after they were made. Born in Chicago, Leonard began as a stage actor, making his film debut in 1908 at the Selig Polyscope studios in Chicago; his directing career began in 1913 at Rex, a former independent then operating as a unit within Universal. Leonard’s early films were comedies, often starring Leonard himself as a “boob” or an ethnic Swedish caricature. From the time vaudeville star Mae Murray arrived in Hollywood in 1916, Leonard gradually became her principal director, he abandoned his own career as a movie actor by 1918, but did make unbilled cameo appearances in later films.
Murray’s headstrong behavior and… read more
"Marianne" (1929), a quasi-musical drama, is Marion Davies' first foray into sound, and quite a courageous effort at that. Davies, unlike the greater portion of her peers, seems more up to the challenge of conquering the new cinematic medium, showcasing her gifts for impersonations (most notably Maurice Chevalier) and mimicking foreign accents with a daring confidence, succeeding where so many of her silent counterparts miserably failed; making a smooth transition to sound.