Ost und West (1923)

Genres - Comedy, Romance  |   Sub-Genres - Comedy of Manners, Romantic Comedy  |   Run Time - 65 min.  |   Countries - Austria  |  
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This film features the work of former vaudevillian and Hollywood actress Molly Picon. It chronicles the ensuing culture class between "Westernized" Jews and their very traditional relatives. Modern young Picon, an American Jew, creates quite a stir when she appears in the "cat's meow" of 1920's fashion during her cousin Zelda's very traditional wedding in Austria. Mollie continues to generate scandal as she shares her modern antics with the reserved traditionals around her including teaching the cantor's male congregation how to do the shimmy. She participates in a pseudo-wedding with Jacob, a student of the Talmud, but does not understand what subsequently happens to him. She especially does not understand when Jacob refuses to divorce her, even though the marriage was never consummated. He wants to wait five years. She agrees. At the end of that time Joseph has become a famed author and Mollie has become a fallen woman who does not discover that she really loves her husband until the very end.

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Keywords

cultural-shock, flapper, Judaism, cross-cultural-relations, family, divorce, fashion, love, marriage, marriage-of-convenience, scandal, tradition, wedding, writing