Capital Celluloid 2022 — Day 190: Mon Jul 11

Angel (Lubitsch, 1937): Garden Cinema, Covent Garden, 8pm

This film (being shown throughout July) is part of the Marlene Dietrich season at the Garden Cinema. You can find the full details here.

New Yorker review:
Ernst Lubitsch serves medicinal bitters in the champagne flutes of this terse, elliptical, comedy-tinged yet pain-seared romance, from 1937. Marlene Dietrich plays Maria Barker, the neglected wife of the aristocratic Frederick (Herbert Marshall), a British diplomat. While he’s crisscrossing Europe for the League of Nations, she heads to a Parisian salon-cum-brothel in search of new friends, and she finds one—a playboy named Anthony Halton (Melvyn Douglas), with whom she has a night of anonymous adventure before slipping home to London. A few days later, the two men meet in high-society circles, and when Anthony dines at Frederick’s mansion he embarrassingly meets his onetime lover again. Lubitsch sees the round of coincidences as a game of cruel destiny, albeit one that’s played on the world stage against a backdrop of looming war. He contrasts Frederick’s sexless gravity with Anthony’s seductive frivolity; with suavely piercing touches of erotic wit, he points ahead to the modern audacities of “Belle de Jour” and “Last Tango in Paris,” and to the higher irresponsibilities that make life worth living. In Lubitsch’s world, all politics is sexual.
Richard Brody

Here (and above) is an extract.

No comments: