George Fitzmaurice (13 February 1885 — 13 June 1940) was a French-born film director and producer. Fitzmaurice’s career first started as a set designer on stage. Beginning in 1914 until his death in 1940, he directed over 80 films, including several successful movies such as The Son of the Sheik, Raffles, Mata Hari, and Suzy.
At the beginning of his directorial career Fitzmaurice was astute at directing stage actresses in their initial films when the first wave of great Broadway stars migrated to motion pictures during World War I era, including Mae Murray, Elsie Ferguson, Fannie Ward, Helene Chadwick, Irene Fenwick, Gail Kane and Edna Goodrich.
Son of the Sheik is his most famous extant silent film, no doubt aided by the sudden death of its star, Rudolph Valentino. Lilac Time is a classic war/romance film. Fitzmaurice however directed scores of silent films of which the majority of them are lost to the ravages of decompostion. Recent discoveries in Gosfilmofond in Russia… read more
Rumor has it an "uncensored" version screened overseas recently. We can only hope it turns up stateside.
A highly fictionalized version of the famous story in which Greta Garbo gives a good performance. Same goes for Lionel Barrymore, Lewis Stone and Karen Morley in supporting roles. The film itself is a conventional glossy melodrama with only a few inspired moments. Great costumes by Adrian.