Madame X (1920)

Sub-Genres - Courtroom Drama  |   Countries - United States   |  
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The role of Jacqueline Floriot -- the Madame X of the film's title -- is a tour de force for any actress. After having an affair she is thrown out of her home only to sink to the depths of drug addiction after her lover leaves her. Then twenty years later she murders a blackmailer to keep scandal from touching the life of her son, now grown. Since she refuses to divulge her name she is put on trial as Madame X and unknowingly defended by her son. The play by Alexandre Brisson was filmed once before in 1916; this time around it stars Pauline Frederick, one of silent filmdom's most respected dramatic actresses. She was supported by William Courtleigh as her husband and Casson Ferguson as her grown son, Raymond. This was a first class Goldwyn production, but even in 1920, most people wanted a little more action than could be offered by picture whose climax takes place in a courtroom.