La Belle Russe (1919)

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In this film, her next-to-last picture for Fox, it was Theda Bara's turn to tackle a double role (just about every star in the late-1910s did this). Bara's characters are twin sisters La Belle Russe, the wicked one, and Fleurette, the nice one. They're Parisian dancers, and Fleurette marries Philip Sackton (Warburton Gamble). However, Sackton is a member of Britain's snooty aristocracy, and his family disinherits him. Undaunted, he tries his hand at painting, while Fleurette teaches dance to children. Philip enlists in the war, where another officer tells him of his trials and tribulations with La Belle Russe. Sackton is wounded and sent home, where he discovers that because his only brother has died, his mother (Alice Wilson) has decided to mend fences and welcome Fleurette into the family. But Philip has taken his officer friend with him and when they arrive at the Sackton estate thinking they'll find Fleurette, the officer is horrified to see La Belle Russe living there. Philip is destroyed, believing that Fleurette was the promiscuous one. Actually it is La Belle Russe who is at the Sackton's -- she has tried to take over Fleurette's identity so she can live in luxury. But the real Fleurette shows up and dashes her plans. This film, directed by Bara's future husband, Charles J. Brabin, was adapted from a 1880s stage play written by David Belsaco.