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Foolish Wives [Blu-ray]


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Editorial Reviews

As artistically brilliant as it is gleefully perverse, Foolish Wives is Erich von Stroheim's epic-scale account of an American diplomat's wife (Miss Dupont) who falls under the spell of a phony Russian Count (von Stroheim). With his trademark eye for visual metaphor and gritty detail, von Stroheim infuses the artistocratic splendor of Monte Carlo (rebuilt in all its majesty on the Universal backlot) with an air of moral depravity. The result is a Grimm's fairy tale romance that is no less fascinating today than it was 80 years ago. First time ever on Blu-ray!

Product Details

  • Actors: Rudolph Christians, Miss Dupont, Eric Von Stroheim
  • Directors: Eric Von Stroheim
  • Format: Blu-ray, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Kino Lorber films
  • DVD Release Date: July 30, 2013
  • Run Time: 143 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00CL1SQHU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #54,133 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
5 star
71%
4 star
21%
3 star
7%
2 star
0%
1 star
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See all 14 customer reviews
She comes close to being seduced but escapes and learns the true value of her husband.
Elaine Bourne Kent
If you are a fan of silent movies, and of von Stroheim in particular, this is a must-have for any reason that you can think about - cinematic history at its best.
Carlos E. Velasquez
The astonishing handle of the camera and the facial expressions have in him an eloquent and perfect ambassador.
Hiram Gomez Pardo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By brad baker on December 21, 2000
Format: DVD
In 1922, Universal Pictures commissioned Erich von Stroheim to direct, write, and star in "Foolish Wives". His first film, "Blind Husbands",was quite a hit. His second film, "Devil's Passkey", has turned to dust. Prof. Arthur Lennig has edited the clearest scenes from 2 Italian versions of this ancient classic, and for the first time you may see and own the most complete edition of "Foolish Wives" in startling DVD. Green and orange sepia toned sequences alter the mood and story. "Foolish Wives" opens with von Stroheim munching on real caviar and Russian cigarettes as he gazes out of his oceanside chateau with his two female consorts. This begins his story of a bogus European count out to defraud and seduce unwary American tourists' wives. The first film to sport a Million Dollar budget, von Stroheim reconstructed an authentic replica of the Monte Carlo casino on the Universal back lot. A tour of Universal Studios today reveals no trace of this once famous set. I recommend this tale of kinky sex and mild debauchery as it winds down to a surprise ending. Just three years later, he directed "Greed" at MGM. It is now considered among the one-or-two greatest films of alltime. Eventually, Hollywood studios barred Erich von Stroheim from directing any more lavish, expensive epics. They said his style was over-rated. They've been copying and re-inventing it ever since.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Nate Goyer on October 8, 2000
Format: DVD
Erich Von Stroheim was an absolute genius and brought the art of movie making to new heights. In a time when many films consisted of room shots with the individuals in frame overacting to compensate for the lack of sound, Stroheim was developing complex characters, plot twists and subtle nuances. He understood that a certain look, movement of the eyes, or quick smile could tell an audience more about a character than 10 title cards.
"Foolish Wives" is genuinely wonderful film that shows Erich Von Stroheim at one of his best moments; Not only writing & directing, but starring in the film itself as a hoaxing opportunist very much addicted to using women and very much in need of money. He finds a vulnerable woman that allows him to begin weaving his web of seduction over her emotional and financial state.
"Foolish Wives" is an excellent film, compared to silents and talkies alike, "Foolish Wives" holds it's own.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 7, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Von Stroheim's tale of a foolish wife of an American Ambassador falling for a lecherous and amoral count (Von Stroheim) still has the power to fascinate and manipulate audiences. Stroheim's attention to detail gives amazing psychological depth to the characters with some lurid details thrown in for good measure. A tale of amorality that almost goes too far until it is all redeemed with the lead character being dumped in a sewer-where he belonged. A great film with a dramatic story that holds up quite well today.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Carlos E. Velasquez on September 30, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
They called him "the man you loved to hate," and that might have been the feeling that some moviegoers had for director Erich Von Stroheim. And that was for sure the feeling that some movie executives had for him, especially the legendary Irving Thalberg, who some consider the best producer ever. The majestic and delightful "Foolish Wives" is a testament of Von Stroheim's appetite for big budgets and out-of-control behavior, the ones that he was famous for. However, it is also a testament of his grandiosity as both an actor and director. Referred to as the "first million-dollar picture," "Foolish Wives" is now available in a glorious Blu-ray edition, thanks to the folks at Kino-Lorber.

The film opens in Monte Carlo -- "Europe's playground" --, and we are immediately taken to Villa Amo Rosa, "secluded and leased for the season by three members of the Russian aristocracy (or so we are told): Princess Olga Petchnikoff (Maude George), Princess Vera Petchnikoff (Mae Busch), and their cousin, Count Wladislaw Sergius Karamzin (also a Captain in the Russian Army)." They also have a maid, Maruschka (Dale Fuller), who is clandestinely in love with Count Karamzin. They live an apparent idyllic life - caviar for breakfast--, but in the underneath, they are in desperate need of money. Enter Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Hughes (Rudolph Christians and Miss Dupont, respectively), who would be arriving to Monaco, with Mr. Hughes being the commissioner plenipotentiary from the United States. Mr. Hughes would be meeting Monaco's officials to present them with his credentials. Count Karamzin immediately sees an opportunity there, and eventually befriends them, with the objective of conquering Mrs, Hughes' heart (and money), telling them that he wanted to be a "kind protector" to them.
Read more ›
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Hiram Gomez Pardo HALL OF FAME on February 3, 2005
Format: DVD
Once more the genius of Erich von Stroheim can be appreciated in this superb and mature film. The astonishing handle of the camera and the facial expressions have in him an eloquent and perfect ambassador. Sobriety, charm and exquisite good taste are the real difference.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Phil S. on August 31, 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Very interesting story of deception among the jet set before there was one.
Eric von Stroheim plays a real Count who dishonors his home and visiting country by enlisting two fake cousins in his schemes to extract wealth from Monte Carlo vacationers. When he's not pursuing rich married women, he's "borrowing" from the Housekeeper he has promised to marry.
One of the "cousins" is Mae Busch in an early role. Known better as "Mrs. Hardy" or L & H's nemesis in many Laurel and Hardy films, it's fun to watch her strut her stuff: the character is similiar to the one from "Chickens Come Home", from about 10 years later.
Great sets, costumes; interesting camera angles; tintype effect. New musical soundtrack is a solo piano, beautifully incorporated.
Viewer should know that the film conatins some very disturbing racial
content, of course, typical of the period.
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Foolish Wives [Blu-ray]
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