Review: ‘The Single Standard’

Although Greta Garbo, as Arden Stuart, is meant to throw off the cloak of conventionalism for free plunges, the actress is almost unfeline in her brazen directness. The star keeps well wrapped throughout.

Although Greta Garbo, as Arden Stuart, is meant to throw off the cloak of conventionalism for free plunges, the actress is almost unfeline in her brazen directness. The star keeps well wrapped throughout.

Garbo’s impulsive rush to the chauffeur hits as too quick a stepping out of character and too sudden a drop for a moral aspect that had been fairly high. The chauffeur deliberately wrecking his boss’ car, and killing himself after the conquest, is an illogically sincere interpretation.

Greta lets a couple of months elapse after the tragedy before she is impelled to seek another victim. This time it is the over-gifted Packy Cannon, a regular villager with a Rockefeller fountain of dough. Asther is Packy. He does not lend the sailor-artist-boxer role the John Gilbertine touch.

This is followed by a regular film trip through the South Seas with plenty of stretching and necking. Finally even Packy tires. This permits Garbo and the picture to go in for matrimony with a mild but virile man (John Mack Brown) who gives her the son that kills off moral turpitude.

The Single Standard

Production

M-G-M. Director John S. Robertson; Screenplay Josephine Lovett, Marion Ainslee; Camera Oliver Marsh; Editor Blanche Sewell; Art Director Cedric Gibbons

Crew

Silent. (B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1929. Running time: 73 MIN.

With

Greta Garbo Nils Asther John Mack Brown Dorothy Sebastian Lane Chandler Robert Castle
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