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FOOLISH WIVES

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Part of the seriesVON STROHEIM

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LIVE PIANO ACCOMPANIMENT BY STEVE STERNER

(1922) Those roulette wheels keep spinning in Monte Carlo, as Russian count Von Stroheim, ensconced in an exotic villa, complete with amorous “cousins” Maude George and Mae Bush, passes counterfeit money and fleeces wives, among them a rich American – but there’s fiery retribution in store. A true film maudit – sets were destroyed by storms and a major actor died during filming, even as the mounting cost was tallied daily on a Times Square electric sign, with major studio re-cutting marking Von’s first trip to the doghouse. Print courtesy Library of Congress.

REVIEWS

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"Its epic view of postwar European decadence is still staggering."
– Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader

"The film features the most daring intertitles in the history of silent cinema, and von Stroheim uses their stream-of-conscious nature to enhance the film's startling aesthetic shifts and to point to the politics at work throughout the narrative."
– Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine