|Directed by||King Vidor|
|Produced by||Samuel Goldwyn|
|Written by||Robert Gore-Browne (novel)|
|Starring|| Ronald Colman |
|Music by||Alfred Newman|
|Distributed by||United Artists|
Cynara is an American pre-Code 1932 romantic drama film about a British lawyer who pays a heavy price for an affair. It stars Ronald Colman, Kay Francis, and Phyllis Barry. It is based on the 1928 novel An Imperfect Lover by Robert Gore-Browne. In February 2020, the film was shown at the 70th Berlin International Film Festival, as part of a retrospective dedicated to King Vidor's career.A text panel at the beginning of the film explains the title: “Inspired by Ernest Dowson's immortal lines—‘I have been faithful to thee, Cynara, in my fashion.” The poem in question, Non Sum Qualis eram Bonae Sub Regno Cynarae , was first published in 1894.
In Naples, disgraced London barrister James "Jim" Warlock (Ronald Colman) prepares to part from his beloved wife Clemency (Kay Francis) and start anew in South Africa. When she asks him to explain the events leading to his downfall, a flashback ensues.
Hard-working, successful, and deeply in love, Jim is looking forward to his seventh wedding anniversary. His friend, John Tring (Henry Stephenson), thinks Jim needs “color” in his life, and laughs at him for being “the last of the virtuous men”. Jim is crestfallen when Clemency informs him that she has to take her sister Garla to Venice for a month to get her away from a parachute jumper, the latest in a string of unsuitable men with whom she has fallen in love.
While the women are away, Tring takes his friend out to dine. At the restaurant, a young shopgirl Doris Lea (Phyllis Barry) in the next booth dons Jim's bowler hat on a dare from her friend and flatmate, Milly Miles. Tring is enchanted, and persuades the reluctant Jim to join the girls. Doris takes a great liking to Jim and gives him her address. Later, he tears up the slip of paper.
Tring has other ideas. He arranges for Jim to judge a swimsuit contest and informs Doris, who becomes a contestant. Jim names her the winner. When she slips and injures her ankle, he picks her up and takes her back to her flat. There, he warns her that he is married and that nothing good can come of their relationship. She tells him that she will not cause trouble when he wishes to end it. They embark on an idyllic affair.
However, when Clemency, Garla, and Garla's new Italian fiancé finally return, Doris finds it impossible to give up the man she loves. Finally, Jim writes her a letter telling her he cannot see her anymore. She responds by committing suicide.
The letter is found, and Jim is forced to testify at the inquest. When the coroner (Halliwell Hobbes) asks if Doris had any prior relationships, Jim protects her privacy and refuses to answer, even though she told him of an earlier liaison. Jim is guilty of no criminal offence, but the scandal destroys his promising career.
The flashback ends. After Jim leaves to board his ocean liner, Tring comes to talk to Clemency. He accepts a share of the blame for what happened, and he reminds Clemency that she may never see Jim again. She rushes to the ship to join her husband.
King Wallis Vidor was an American film director, film producer, and screenwriter whose 67-year film-making career successfully spanned the silent and sound eras. His works are distinguished by a vivid, humane, and sympathetic depiction of contemporary social issues. Considered an auteur director, Vidor approached multiple genres and allowed the subject matter to determine the style, often pressing the limits of movie-making conventions.
Bulldog Drummond is a 1929 American pre-Code crime film in which Hugh "Bulldog" Drummond helps a beautiful young woman in distress. The film stars Ronald Colman as the title character, Claud Allister, Lawrence Grant, Montagu Love, Wilson Benge, Joan Bennett, and Lilyan Tashman. Produced by Samuel Goldwyn and directed by F. Richard Jones, the movie was adapted by Sidney Howard from the play by H. C. McNeile.
Henry Stephenson was a British stage and film actor. He portrayed friendly and wise gentlemen in many films of the 1930s and 1940s. Among his roles were Sir Joseph Banks in Mutiny on the Bounty (1935) and Mr. Brownlow in Oliver Twist (1948).
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The Prisoner of Zenda is a 1937 American black-and-white adventure film based on Anthony Hope's 1894 novel of the same name and the 1896 play.
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Raffles is a 1930 American pre-Code comedy-mystery film produced by Samuel Goldwyn. It stars Ronald Colman as the title character, a proper English gentleman who moonlights as a notorious jewel thief, and Kay Francis as his love interest. It is based on the play Raffles, the Amateur Cracksman (1906) by E. W. Hornung and Eugene Wiley Presbrey, which was in turn adapted from the 1899 short story collection of the same name by Hornung.
Phyllis Barry was an English film actress. Born in Leeds, West Riding of Yorkshire, England, to Seth Henry and Bertha Hillyard, Barry appeared in over 40 films between 1925 and 1947.
Herbert Halliwell Hobbes was an English actor.
The first season of Charmed, an American supernatural drama television series created by Constance M. Burge, originally aired in the United States on The WB from October 7, 1998 through May 26, 1999. Paramount Home Entertainment released the complete first season in a six-disc DVD box set on February 1, 2005, and was released as a high-definition blu-ray on October 30, 2018.
British Agent is a 1934 American espionage film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Leslie Howard and Kay Francis. It is based on Memoirs of a British Agent, the 1932 autobiography of R. H. Bruce Lockhart, who worked for the British Secret Service during the Russian Revolution and had an affair with a Russian agent, later known as Moura Budberg. The film was produced by First National, then a division of Warner Bros.
Bulldog Drummond's Peril is a 1938 American adventure crime mystery film directed by James P. Hogan and starring John Barrymore and John Howard. The film is based on Herman C. McNeile's novel The Third Round.
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The Light That Failed is a 1939 drama film based on Rudyard Kipling's 1891 novel of the same name. It stars Ronald Colman as an artist who is going blind
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Naughty but Nice is a 1939 Warner Bros. musical comedy film directed by Ray Enright, starring Dick Powell and Ann Sheridan and featuring Gale Page, Ronald Reagan, and Helen Broderick, with Allen Jenkins, ZaSu Pitts, and Maxie Rosenbloom in supporting roles. The original story and screenplay were written by Richard Macaulay and Jerry Wald, and the film includes songs with music by Harry Warren and lyrics by Johnny Mercer, as well as music adapted from Bach, Beethoven, Liszt, Mozart, Robert Schumann, and Wagner. Ann Sheridan did her own singing in the film, except for song "In a Moment of Weakness", in which she was dubbed by Vera Van.
The Right to Live is a 1935 American drama film directed by William Keighley and starring Josephine Hutchinson, George Brent and Colin Clive. The film was shot at Warner Brothers's Burbank Studios, with sets designed by the art director Esdras Hartley.