There is little evidence left today to support the acclamation of Dorothy Gish as one of the silent screen's greatest comediennes. Too few of her feature films have survived the years, and the majority of those that have showcase the actress in dramatic--and frequently tragic--roles. Although The Country Flapper never was considered among the best of the Gish comedies, it remains a pleasant diversion and is one of only a handful available for viewing. As a small-town imitation of big-city flappers, Dorothy gets into all manner of comic mischief when she sets out to win back the affections of her country bumpkin sweetheart who's become enamored of the real thing.
Producers Security Corp./Dorothy Gish Productions
Scenario: Harry Carr.
Titles and Editing: Joseph W. Farnham
Photography: Fred Chaston
With: Dorothy Gish, Glenn Hunter, Mildred Marsh, Harlan Knight, Tom Douglas, Raymond Hackett, Albert Hackett.
35mm, silent, approximately 60 min.
The last of Lillian Gish's five films made during the 1920s for MGM (released prior to The Wind in 1928, but shot after it), The Enemy also is the least known of them. But even though not in the same league with Gish classics like The Scarlet Letter (1926), or even pictures of secondary stature such as Annie Laurie (1927), The Enemy still has much to recommend it. Lillian's young Austrian wife, struggling with privation during the Great War while her husband is away at the front, is another of her standout portrayals. The explicitness of scenes in a bordello, and those depicting the cruelties of war, were criticized at the time by those who preferred the restraint of the 1925 play by Channing Pollock over its screen adaptation.
Adaptation: Willis Goldbeck
Photography: Oliver Marsh
Editor: Margaret Booth
With: Lillian Gish, Ralph Forbes, Ralph Emerson, Fran Currier, George Fawcett, Karl Dane, Polly Moran
35mm, silent, 96 min.
Many of the images used are courtesy of The Silents Majority
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