The Marriage Circle
Dir: Ernst Lubitsch
USA, 1924, Silent, 85mins, DCP
Cast: Florence Vidor, Monte Blue, Marie Prevost
In his second Hollywood film, Ernst Lubitsch adapts Lothar Schmidt’s play Only a Dream into a wickedly funny and progressive comedy of manners. A neglected and pathologically unfaithful wife sets her sights on seducing her best friend’s new husband. Her professor husband hires a private detective to investigate her, and the results prove chaotically witty. Inspired by Chaplin’s A Woman of Paris (1923), this merry-go-round of marital misunderstandings maneuvered through jealousy, infidelity and sexuality see his inventive comic sensibility and artfullyconstructed direction elevate to new heights. Lubitsch would go on to remake the film in 1932 with George Cukor, as the talkie One Hour with You.