OYSTER PRINCESS, THE
The spoiled daughter (Ossi Oswalda) of an American industrialist (Victor Janson) demands that her father procure a prince for her to marry, periodically demolishing their gargantuan villa when she doesn't get her way. An impoverished Prince Nucki (Harry Liedtke) fills the bill, but he wants to make sure the prospective bride is sufficiently wealthy, leading to complications. For director Ernst Lubitsch, the greatest sin of these boorish American nouveaux riches are their bad manners. They sleep too long, keep their guests waiting and talk incessantly. Lubitsch considered THE OYSTER PRINCESS "my first comedy, which showed something of a definite style." Indeed, Lubitsch's satire develops for the first time from his detailed mise en scène, including the sheer pomposity of a wedding feast with 300 waiters, the frustration of a manservant as he paces in circles around an intricately designed parquet floor and the hundreds of photos of eligible bachelors on the wall in the marriage broker's office. (Note courtesy of UCLA.) DIR/SCR Ernst Lubitsch; SCR Hanns Kräly; PROD Paul Davidson. Germany, 1919, b&w, 64 min. Silent with English intertitles. NOT RATED
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