***We're looking for contributors***

'Greed' Review: Erich von Stroheim Silent Masterpiece

ZaSu Pitts, Gibson Gowland, Erich von Stroheim Greed
Gibson Gowland, Jean Hersholt in Erich von Stroheim's Greed

Erich von Stroheim's masterpiece and one of the best silent films ever made, Greed remains a powerful indictment against the deadly sin of the title.

Based on Frank Norris' novel McTeague, Greed revolves around the misdeeds of a California dentist (Gibson Gowland), his miserly wife (comedienne ZaSu Pitts magisterially cast against type), and her former lover (Jean Hersholt), all of whom sacrifice everything – and I mean everything – to the almighty god of dollar bills.

Stroheim's initial cut had 47 reels, which the director wanted to release as two films. Louis B. Mayer and Irving Thalberg's Metro-Goldwyn (and its parent company, Loews, Inc.), which inherited the out-of-control project from the Goldwyn studios, balked at the idea. (Thalberg had previously clashed with von Stroheim when both were working at Universal.)

With the assistance of Metro director Rex Ingram, screenwriter-producer June Mathis, who had supervised the making of the film while at Goldwyn Pictures, and editor/intertitle writer Joseph W. Farnham, Greed was eventually pared down to 10 reels (approximately 2h15m). That is what's known to survive from the original film.

But in spite of the drastic cuts, many of Stroheim's magnificently perverted excesses are very much in evidence in this unforgettable journey into both inner and outer hell.

Greed (1924). Dir.: Erich von Stroheim. Scr.: Erich von Stroheim, June Mathis; from Frank Norris' novel McTeague. Cast: Gibson Gowland, ZaSu Pitts, Jean Hersholt, Dale Fuller, Chester Conklin, Sylvia Ashton.

         
'Greed' Review: Erich von Stroheim Silent Masterpiece © 2004–2018 Alt Film Guide and/or author(s).
Text NOT to be reproduced without prior written consent.

Leave a comment about ''Greed' Review: Erich von Stroheim Silent Masterpiece'

COMMENTING RULES:

Don't waste time and energy disagreeing with and/or being deeply offended by the presentation of factual information.

On the other hand, it's perfectly okay to disagree with and/or, if you're so inclined, to be deeply offended by the views & opinions (and/or likes & dislikes) found on this site. And to let us know about any omissions or, heaven forbid, errors.

Just bear in mind that *thoughtfulness* and *at least a modicum of sanity* are imperative.

In other words: Feel free to add something reasonable & coherent – AND fact-based – to the discussion.

Abusive/bigoted, trollish/inflammatory, baseless (spreading misinformation, whether intentionally or not), spammy, and/or just plain deranged comments will be zapped and offenders may be banned.

And finally, links found in comments will generally be deleted.

Most recent comments listed on top.