Male and Female


Male and Female
Male and Female
Directed by Cecil B. DeMille (uncredited)
Produced by Cecil B. DeMille
Written by Jeanie Macpherson
J.M. Barrie (orig. play)
Starring Gloria Swanson
Music by Sydney Jill Lehman (1997 alt version)
Cinematography Alvin Wyckoff
Release date(s) 23 November 1919
Running time 116 minutes
Country United States
Language Silent Film
English intertitles

Male and Female is a 1919 silent film directed by Cecil B. DeMille.[1] Its main themes are gender relations and social class. It is based on the J. M. Barrie play "The Admirable Crichton".

Contents

Plot

The film centers on the relationship between Lady Mary Loam (played by Gloria Swanson), a British aristocrat, and her butler, Crichton. Crichton fancies a romance with Mary, but she disdains him because of his lower social class. When the two and some others are shipwrecked on a desert island, they are left to fend for themselves in a state of nature. The aristocrats' abilities to survive are far worse than those of Crichton, and a role reversal ensues, with the butler becoming a king among the stranded group. Crichton and Mary are about to wed on the island when the group is rescued. Upon returning to Britain, Crichton chooses not to marry Mary; instead, he asks a maid, Tweeny (who had fancied Crichton throughout the film), to marry him, and the two move to the United States.

The film contains two famous scenes, indicative of de Mille's predilections as a filmmaker. An early scene depicts Gloria Swanson bathing in an elaborate setting, attended by two maids, lavishing her with rose-water and bath salts, silk dressing gown and luxurious towels. Toward the end of the film, a fantasy sequence about ancient Rome shows Swanson posed as Gabriel von Max's famous painting, "The Lion's Bride", which involved her being photographed with an actual lion.

Cast

See also

References

External links


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