The Magnificent Lie (1931)

77 or 79 mins | Melodrama | 25 July 1931

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
26 Jul 31
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jul 31
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
25 Jul 31
p. 28, 34
New York Times
25 Jul 31
p. 11.
New York Times
2 Aug 31
p. 3.
Variety
28 Jul 31
p. 14.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
PHOTOGRAPHY
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the short story "Laurels and the Lady" by Leonard Merrick in the The Man Who Understood Women and Other Stories (London, 1908).
DETAILS
Release Date:
25 July 1931
Copyright Claimant:
Paramount Publix Corp.
Copyright Date:
24 July 1931
Copyright Number:
LP2361
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Noiseless Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
77 or 79
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

In World War I, soldier Bill Childers is wounded in the head. He is visited in the army hospital by Rosa Duchene, a famous French actress whose visit is merely her contribution to the war effort. Bill falls in love with her, however, and his infatuation with her continues over twelve years. Now in the United States running a lumber organization with his partner Elmer Graham, Bill hears that Rosa will be in town to perform Camille . Although Bill still suffers from impaired vision from his war wound, he and Elmer attend the performance. They bring camellias backstage for Rosa, but the flowers are intercepted by two dandy actors, Jacques and Pierre, who send them to cabaret performer Poll. Bill's eyes are strained so severely from watching Camille that he loses his sight altogether. When the French actors and Poll discover Bill is blind, they decide to play a trick on him and pretend that Poll is Rosa, because she does such a perfect imitation of the actress. The ruse works, and Bill confesses his love for Rosa, unaware that she is really Poll, while the French actors snigger in the background. After a doctor informs Bill he has glaucoma, and is permanently blind, he becomes bitter and despondent, threatening to end his life. Elmer asks Poll to play Rosa again, this time to raise his spirits, but Bill pushes away her encouragement. Bill and Elmer attend the nightclub where Poll performs. Bill is enchanted by her voice, and she joins him at the table, this time as herself. The real Rosa, who is amused by ... +


In World War I, soldier Bill Childers is wounded in the head. He is visited in the army hospital by Rosa Duchene, a famous French actress whose visit is merely her contribution to the war effort. Bill falls in love with her, however, and his infatuation with her continues over twelve years. Now in the United States running a lumber organization with his partner Elmer Graham, Bill hears that Rosa will be in town to perform Camille . Although Bill still suffers from impaired vision from his war wound, he and Elmer attend the performance. They bring camellias backstage for Rosa, but the flowers are intercepted by two dandy actors, Jacques and Pierre, who send them to cabaret performer Poll. Bill's eyes are strained so severely from watching Camille that he loses his sight altogether. When the French actors and Poll discover Bill is blind, they decide to play a trick on him and pretend that Poll is Rosa, because she does such a perfect imitation of the actress. The ruse works, and Bill confesses his love for Rosa, unaware that she is really Poll, while the French actors snigger in the background. After a doctor informs Bill he has glaucoma, and is permanently blind, he becomes bitter and despondent, threatening to end his life. Elmer asks Poll to play Rosa again, this time to raise his spirits, but Bill pushes away her encouragement. Bill and Elmer attend the nightclub where Poll performs. Bill is enchanted by her voice, and she joins him at the table, this time as herself. The real Rosa, who is amused by the farce after learning of it, comes to the club to meet Bill. Poll gets Bill drunk, so that he passes out and does not meet the real Rosa, who is heartless. Having broken up with her jealous boyfriend Larry, who owns the club, Poll takes Bill to her apartment and pretends to be Rosa. Having fallen in love with him, she is deeply affected by his kiss, but Bill suddenly realizes that she is not as tall as the true Rosa and that he has been duped. As she takes him home, she crashes their car into a tree. The blow to Bill's head causes him to regain his sight, but Poll has injured her foot, so he carries her to his cabin. After Elmer arrives, worried about Bill, Poll takes a cab home. Before she leaves, however, she and Bill make a date, having recognized their true love for each other. +

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

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