The Divorcee

The Divorcee
Romance
, Drama

1930

Director: Robert Z. Leonard (uncredited) CastNorma Shearer, Chester Morris, Conrad Nagel, Robert Montgomery, Florence Eldridge, Helene Millard, Robert Elliott, Mary Doran, Tyler Brooke, Zelda Sears, George Irving, Judith Wood

Academy Awards: Best Actress in a Leading Role (Norma Shearer)

Also Nominated For: Best Picture; Best Director (Robert Z. Leonard); Best Writing, Achievement (John Meehan)

I First Saw In: 2015

Synopsis: When a woman discovers that her husband has been unfaithful to her, she decides to respond to his infidelities in kind.

Did You Know? Though its source material, Ex-Wife by Ursula Parrott, was a bestseller in 1929, MGM was a bit wary of being too closely associated with the racy material. So they did not credit Parrott directly. Instead, the screen credit reads “Based on a novel by Ursula Parrott”.

Quotables: JERRY: I’ve no intention of waiting around for three or four years while you harvest an additional crop of wild oats.

And now a Word from the Guise:
I’m just mad about The Divorcee! It’s refreshing to see a film today with strong female leads, let alone from Hollywood’s Golden Age. But The Divorcee gives us Jerry, a strong woman who has had enough of the male entitlement game. She’s sick of her husband’s hypocrisy; it’s okay for him to have an affair, but the minute she does, she’s a coquettish hussy. She tries to reconcile with him, but he in turn tries to shame her into submission. So she liberates herself by dispensing of him and dating a handful of other men. Eventually she goes back to him, but she’s the one who makes that choice.

Oscar Madness Ranking – ??? out of 233