STELLA DALLAS (1925)
The 1937 version with Barbara Stanwyck is better known, but Henry King's 1925 silent version is revelatory — an unsparing examination of class divisions and maternal self-sacrifice. Fun-loving but unrefined, working class Stella (Belle Bennett) marries into the wealthy family of Stephen Dallas (Ronald Colman). Their marriage ends quickly, but not before the birth of their daughter Laurel (Lois Moran). Unable to assimilate into the lofty social circles of her former husband, but wanting the best for her bright and promising daughter, Stella makes a surprising and heartbreaking sacrifice to help her daughter's future. DIR Henry King; SCR Frances Marion, from the novel by Olive Higgins Prouty; PROD Samuel Goldwyn. U.S., 1925, b&w, 110 min, 35mm. NOT RATED
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