A Bill of Divorcement (1922)

Genres - Drama  |   Run Time - 61 min.  |   Countries - United Kingdom , United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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This English-made production was the first time Clarence Dane's stage play was brought to the screen. It doesn't sound like much from the plot description -- insanity runs in the family of Hilary Fairfield (Malcolm Keen), and when he becomes afflicted he is locked away in an asylum. After ten years, his wife Margaret (Fay Compton), accepts that he's incurable and prepares to wed Gray Meredith (Henry Victor). But Fairfield escapes from the asylum, and would have been released as cured if he had waited another week. He walks in on Margaret and Meredith, and high drama ensues. The upshot of it all is that Margaret is allowed to go off with Meredith, while Fairfield's daughter Sydney (Constance Binney, the one American in the cast) stays with her father to take care of him. The trade paper Motion Picture News felt that the story was "too meagre [sic] for a six-reel production and padding is evident throughout." While the 1932 talkie remake was no great shakes (in spite of a great cast), Katherine Hepburn shone as Sydney in her film debut. The play, which did not age well, was picturized one more time in 1940.



actor, husband, insanity, stars [celebrities]