The Devil's Passkey (1920)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Romantic Drama, Showbiz Drama  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Made in between his two classics, Blind Husbands and Foolish Wives, this drama from director Erich von Stroheim centers on a restless American wife married to a rich but unsuccessful playwright who reels after his newest work is rejected. The trouble begins when she finds herself strongly attracted to a handsome army officer and begins an affair. Unfortunately, the scandal hits the paper, though no names are mentioned. Upon reading about it, the playwright is suddenly inspired and uses it to beef up his play. He has no idea that his wife is involved until opening night. The play is a smash hit thanks to his wife's philandering, but she is utterly humiliated. She gets a headache and asks her husband, who still doesn't know, to escort her home. Instead he asks her lover to do it. As the party goes on, the truth theatens to come out.

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Keywords

America, army, claim, couple, director, doubt, employment, extramarital-affair, gossip, guest, home, homosexual, humiliation, husband, indiscretion, innocence, inspiration, irony, love, love-conquers-all, murder, officer, party, playwright, production [showbiz], return, revenge, show, stage, success, suicide, weapons, wife, writing