Man and Wife (1923)

Genres - Drama  |   Run Time - 51 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Norma Shearer plays Dora Perkins, a country girl who runs away to New York City. She gets work as a nurse and marries Dr. Howard Fleming (Robert Elliott), a famed brain surgeon. Supposedly she dies in a fire, and some time later Fleming takes a vacation in the country, where by some odd cinematic coincidence he winds up meeting Dolly, Dora's sister (Gladys Leslie). Without realizing her relationship to Dora, he marries her. Soon Dolly is expecting, and not long after, Dora pops up -- she survived the fire, but has been left hopelessly insane. An operation restores her sanity, but Fleming's cousin reveals that she is married to a bigamist, causing Dora to panic and injure herself again. A second operation conveniently kills her, and Dolly -- who has been kept ignorant of all these plot complications -- can have Fleming's child in peace. Shearer somehow managed to make her role believable -- a near miracle, considering the material.

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Keywords

bigamy, daughter, doctor/nurse, fire, husband, runaway [from home], wife, worker