2006 – Beyond the Rocks Review

Directed by Sam Wood; written by Jack Cunningham, based on the novel by Elinor Glyn; director of photography, Alfred Gilks; music and sound by Henny Vrienten; produced by Jesse L. Lasky; originally released in 1922 by Famous Players-Lasky and Paramount Pictures; Running time: 85 minutes. This film is not rated.

WITH: Gloria Swanson (Theodora Fitzgerald), Rudolph Valentino (Lord Bracondale), Edythe Chapman (Lady Bracondale), Alec B. Francis (Captain Fitzgerald), Robert Bolder (Josiah Brown) and Gertrude Astor (Morella Winmarleigh). Sam Woods directs Swanson and Valentino, two of the biggest stars of the era, with a light touch and keen attention to the audience’s pleasure. Swanson is a poor captain’s daughter betrothed to an unattractive older man, while Valentino is a dashing aristocrat who keeps showing up just when she needs to be saved from danger. The action moves from the rocky coast of England to the Swiss Alps on its way to the Sahara, for no reason beyond the sheer exhilaration of cinematic technique. The faces of the stars glow with life, which makes you all the more grateful that this, their only film together, has come back.

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