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HISTORY

The Summary for this unviewed film was based on contemporary reviews in the 11 Mar 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review, the 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World, and a six-minute fragment of the film on YouTube.
       The early part of Beauty’s Worth was shot on outdoor California locations. For the charade staged later in the picture, scene creator (set decorator) Joseph Urban built three elaborate sets: a “gemlike garden, where Marion Davies dances in the comic love story of “Columbine” and “Harlequin”; the interior of a toy shop, where she is a French doll who comes to life under a Christmas tree, along with a Scottish toy soldier and a Raggedy Ann portrayed by acrobatic clowns the Dooley Brothers; and an Indian temple, where Davies plays a “gorgeous idol” that, again, comes to life. For the latter set, Urban copied the woodwork interior from a temple in Pattan, India, which was currently an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
       The film opened 26 Mar 1922 at the Rivoli Theater in New York, the 8 Feb 1922 FD and 1 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World noted. Reviews were favorable, and the 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World quoted the Daily News praising Davies as “natural, pretty and convincing.” The 28 Mar 1922 FD quoted the New York Sun: “In spite of the fact...that Beauty’s Worth may not be especially effective in its appeal to the cerebellum, it is easy to wax enthusiastic over its artist appeal to the eye.” The 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture ... More Less

The Summary for this unviewed film was based on contemporary reviews in the 11 Mar 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review, the 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World, and a six-minute fragment of the film on YouTube.
       The early part of Beauty’s Worth was shot on outdoor California locations. For the charade staged later in the picture, scene creator (set decorator) Joseph Urban built three elaborate sets: a “gemlike garden, where Marion Davies dances in the comic love story of “Columbine” and “Harlequin”; the interior of a toy shop, where she is a French doll who comes to life under a Christmas tree, along with a Scottish toy soldier and a Raggedy Ann portrayed by acrobatic clowns the Dooley Brothers; and an Indian temple, where Davies plays a “gorgeous idol” that, again, comes to life. For the latter set, Urban copied the woodwork interior from a temple in Pattan, India, which was currently an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
       The film opened 26 Mar 1922 at the Rivoli Theater in New York, the 8 Feb 1922 FD and 1 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World noted. Reviews were favorable, and the 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World quoted the Daily News praising Davies as “natural, pretty and convincing.” The 28 Mar 1922 FD quoted the New York Sun: “In spite of the fact...that Beauty’s Worth may not be especially effective in its appeal to the cerebellum, it is easy to wax enthusiastic over its artist appeal to the eye.” The 8 Apr 1922 Moving Picture World deemed Beauty’s Worth “a typical Marion Davies picture, of which there should be no need of an explanation....The story is of the thinnest sort, containing nothing that will in any way tax the mind.”
       When the film moved from the Rivoli to the larger Rialto Theatre for its second week, in order to accommodate the crowds, it was accompanied by Bobby Vernon’s short comedy, “Hokus Pokus,” the 5 Apr 1922 FD and 6 May 1922 Exhibitors Trade Review noted. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Exhibitors Trade Review
11 Mar 1922
p. 1035.
Exhibitors Trade Review
8 Apr 1922.
---
Exhibitors Trade Review
6 May 1922
p. III.
Film Daily
8 Feb 1922
p. 4.
Film Daily
28 Mar 1922
p. 4.
Film Daily
5 Apr 1922
p. 4.
Moving Picture World
1 Apr 1922
p. 467.
Moving Picture World
8 Apr 1922.
---
Variety
14 Apr 1922
p. 46.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Famous Players - Lasky Corporation presents
A Paramount Picture
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
WRITERS
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
SET DECORATOR
Scenes [set dec]
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the short story "Beauty's Worth" by Sophie Kerr in Saturday Evening Post (14 Feb 1920).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
26 March 1922
Premiere Information:
New York premiere: ca18 March 1922
New York opening: 26 March 1922
Copyright Claimant:
Cosmopolitan Productions
Copyright Date:
5 April 1922
Copyright Number:
LP17726
Physical Properties:
Silent
Black and White
Length(in feet):
6,751
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Prudence Cole, a Quaker brought up by two conservative aunts, Elizabeth and Cynthia Whitney, is happy in her demure unsophistication until former neighbors Henry Garrison and his mother visit the family. Henry, once Prudence’s childhood sweetheart, trifles with Prudence’s affections, but secretly looks down upon her Quaker ways, especially her plain gray gown and bonnet. His mother, Mrs. Garrison, invites Prudence to a fashionable seaside resort, where the snobbish Henry neglects her for a “finely gowned” socialite, Amy Tillson. To amuse themselves, local girls and boys appoint Prudence to persuade Cheyne Rovein, an artist, to stage a charade at the hotel. She convinces Cheyne, who recognizes her “beauty’s worth” beneath the austere clothing. To the others’ amazement, he chooses Prudence for the three leading roles: "Columbine"; a French doll that comes to life; and a Hindu goddess. Her stunning appearances earn accolades among local society swells, and Henry renews his interest, but Prudence instead picks Rovein as her ... +


Prudence Cole, a Quaker brought up by two conservative aunts, Elizabeth and Cynthia Whitney, is happy in her demure unsophistication until former neighbors Henry Garrison and his mother visit the family. Henry, once Prudence’s childhood sweetheart, trifles with Prudence’s affections, but secretly looks down upon her Quaker ways, especially her plain gray gown and bonnet. His mother, Mrs. Garrison, invites Prudence to a fashionable seaside resort, where the snobbish Henry neglects her for a “finely gowned” socialite, Amy Tillson. To amuse themselves, local girls and boys appoint Prudence to persuade Cheyne Rovein, an artist, to stage a charade at the hotel. She convinces Cheyne, who recognizes her “beauty’s worth” beneath the austere clothing. To the others’ amazement, he chooses Prudence for the three leading roles: "Columbine"; a French doll that comes to life; and a Hindu goddess. Her stunning appearances earn accolades among local society swells, and Henry renews his interest, but Prudence instead picks Rovein as her beau. +

GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
Society


Subject

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.