A Greta Garbo Centennial Tribute

Friday, October 14, 2005

The Single Standard (1929) - John S.Robertson

To celebrate Greta Garbo's 100th birthday in September 18th 2005, every friday in September i have dedicated this blog to one of her Yet-To-Be Released-On-DVD movies from the MGM period as i do in my other blog named : 24 Lies Per Second which is dedicated to "screen captures of old rare movies from vhs". I will now keep on focusing on one of her movies in several frames taken from my personal collection. Before we begin, i want to thank TCMFrance for their nearly complete Garbo Retrospective in october 2004 without who i would never have the priviledge to own this collection. If you're living in the USA, Turner Classic Movies has broadcasted the same retrospective in september 2005 !!
I will now capture a new Garbo movie twice a week : every friday & every monday. These are all the MGM Yet-To-Be Released-On-DVD movies that's left for me to capture :
Romance (1930) - Inspiration (1931) - The Painted Veil (1934) - Conquest (1937) - Two-Faced Woman (1941)

00 -
Garbo came back for the first time in Sweden for Christmas 1928. At her return, she confessed to a reporter from the New York Times that she'd like to play Joan of Arc with director Eric Von Stroheim.
You can only dream about that movie that will never see the light, Instead she had Von Stroheim as a co-partner in the delightful though underrated As You Desire Me in 1931.

01 -
Instead MGM has other silly vamp stories for her like The Single Standard.
Directed by John S. Robertson who is remembered because the Byrds named a song after him : Old John Robertson available on the Younger Than Yesterday album & Notorious Byrd Brothers !!
Okay he also made silent movies with Mary Pickford & Lilian Gish.

02 -
03 -
04 -
05 -
06 -
07 -
08 -
09 -
10 -
11 -
12 -
13 -
This is one of the rare movies where Garbo favourite cinematographer Williams Daniels was replaced by Oliver T. Marsh. He has already worked with John S. Robertson on Annie Laurie (1927).
As you can see, he did a good job.

14 -
15 -
16 -
17 -
18 -
19 -
20 -
21 -
Once again as i already wrote if the story is undistinguished, Garbo is still breathtaking !!

22 -
23 -
24 -
25 -
26 -
27 -
28 -
29 -
30 -
31 -
32 -
33 -
I love this interlude where Garbo and her lover spared few previous times on a yacht in a very romantic & exotic way. You have to see Garbo in a bathing suit !!

34 -
35 -
36 -
37 -
38 -
39 -
40 -
41 -
42 -
43 -
44 -
"Why are we mesmerized just watching her on the screen - not just in the emotional or poignant scenes - but doing anything - slowly raising her eyes to look into the camera - glancing to the side in a haughty manner - looking lovingly into her leading man's eyes? Why do we think so highly of some of her movies when we know it is a mediocre story and would no doubt be forgotten had anyone else been in the lead?"
Tim Lussier from the Silents Are Golden website.

45 -
46 -
47 -
48 -
49 -
50 -
51 -
52 -
53 -
54 -
Sadly uncredited for this movie, Wally Albright is the wonderful son of Garbo here. He will later play in the rare fantastic Zoo in Budapest in 1933 with Loretta Young.

55 -
56 -
57 -
58 -
59 -
60 -
61 -
62 -
63 -
64 -
65 -
66 -
67 -
"Garbo had something behind the eyes that you couldn't see until you photographed it in close-up. You could see thought. If she had t look at one person with jealousy, and another with love, she didn't have to change her expression. You could see it in her eyes as she looked from one to the other. And nobody else has been able to do that on the screen."
Clarence Brown interviewed by Kevin Brownlow, The Parade's Gone By, University of Berkeley Press, 1968.

68 -
69 -
70 -
71 -
72 -
73 -
74 -
75 -
76 -
"Garbo's silent films are works of art in a sense. No, she wasn't given the best stories - instead she was given the popular novels of the day - basically soap operas with elegant backgrounds. However, we must be thankful that she was a part of a studio such as MGM where quality was revered and expected. Therefore, although the stories themselves may not be masterpieces, the visual experience alone makes them an aesthetic gratification equal to the viewing of a great painting."
Tim Lussier from the Silents Are Golden website.

"Greta Garbo plays Arden Stuart, a San Francisco debutante, who falls in love with Packy Cannon (Nils Asther), a fighting sailor who has become an artist. They go off together on a yacht for a good time, but when he leaves to go to Paris, she finds herself an outcast back in San Francisco. She ends up marrying Tommy Hewlett (John Mack Brown), who has always loved her, and they have a child. Of course, Packy returns and when Arden is drawn to him her husband contemplates suicide. Arden has to choose between her family and another romantic escape."
Lawrance M. Bernabo - an Amazon reviewer.

These frames are taken from a Broadcast on TCMFrance in october 2004.
The Single Standard has been released on VHS by Warner Studios in june 1991.

bye bye now...
See you next monday for another Garbo movie : Romance (1930).
In the meantime, any comments will be appreciated.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You've done an excellent job of choosing captures and have provided an educational service for those interested in GG. Well done! Pics of Garbo with children are always poignant. Keep agitating to get quality stuff of any era on DVD, and keep your fires burning!

5:53 AM


Post a Comment

<< Home