Greta Garbo and Victor Sjostrom

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Under the Red Robe (Victor Sjostrom, 1937)

Advertisements placed in the Motion Picture Herald during 1937 noted the film "Under The Red Robe, directed by Victor Sjostrom as having been adapted from the "unforgettable novel" written by Stanley T. Whyman and the play by Edward Rose. The Review of Reviews section of World Film News during 1937 quoted the Birmingham Mail. "The period film, we are continually being told (by people in the industry, not the public) is dead. And the period film, hardier than the prophets, continues for the delight of the romantically inclined in an unromantic age...This is a film to enjoy if you have a heart for swashbuckling."

The novel "Under the Red Robe", written by Stanley J. Weyman in 1894, had been filmed on two previous occaisions, once in Great Britain in 1915, directed by Wilfred Noy and again in the United States in 1923, directed by Alan Crosland. The work had already appeared on stage as dramatized by Edward Ross.

Scholar Bo Florin mentions that although while directing in Sweden, Victor Sjostrom spearheaded the Golden Age of Silent and brought international recognition to a Scandinavian cinema that situated its narrative in the literature and landscapes or rural Sweden, in regard to characters and plots, the dramas depicted by Sjostrom would have fit into any international context, perhaps this evolving from Sjostrom's beginnings on the Swedish stage and in the theater.
Greta Garbo

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