Review: ‘Stella Dallas’

A mother picture. Not a great picture, but a great mother picture. Its sentiment is terrific. Henry King tells his story simply and directly without dramatics, gauging the extent to which he can play upon such an emotional subject to a nicety. In this he is helped by two magnificent performances by Belle Bennett and Lois Moran.

A mother picture. Not a great picture, but a great mother picture. Its sentiment is terrific. Henry King tells his story simply and directly without dramatics, gauging the extent to which he can play upon such an emotional subject to a nicety. In this he is helped by two magnificent performances by Belle Bennett and Lois Moran.

If ever there were a two-character picture this is it. Both characters are women, mother and daughter. It tells of a mother who eliminates herself so that her child may enjoy the advantages of which the girl will not partake while knowing that her mother has no one to whom she can turn.

Moran convinces in what practically amounts to three roles, as she plays the daughter at 10, 13 and as a young woman. Excellent in each, her performance is something of a revelation. Bennett, makes something of a cinema comeback in this release.

Alice Joyce makes a splendid contrast, while Ronald Colman is limited in his activities. Jean Hersholt is prominent among the secondary players, with young Douglas Fairbanks Jr acquitting himself creditably in his brief footage.

Stella Dallas

Production

Goldwyn/United Artists. Director Henry King; Producer Samuel Goldwyn; Screenplay Frances Marion; Camera Arthur Edeson; Editor Stuart Heisler; Art Director Ben Carre

Crew

Silent. (B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1925. Running time: 108 MIN.

With

Belle Bennett Ronald Colman Alice Joyce Jean Hersholt Lois Moran Douglas Fairbanks Jr
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