- 58 min
Sex is a silent drama film from 1920, directed by Fred Niblo, starring Louise Glaum, Irving Cummings, and Peggy Pearce. This movie is considered to be one of the most daring films of its time, tackling themes that were considered taboo back then. The story revolves around a woman named Rita Cavallini, played by Louise Glaum, who is a seductive beauty with a love for money. She is a dancer and a gold digger who thrives on her character's sexuality. Rita is also known for her ruthless streak, and as the story unfolds, it becomes clear that she will do anything to get what she wants. Rita's former lover, Jack Brennan (played by Irving Cummings), is a detective who is assigned to solve a murder case in which Rita is the prime suspect. The two had a tumultuous relationship, and Jack is still very much in love with her, despite knowing of her true nature. Rita, on the other hand, is using Jack's feelings to manipulate him into helping her get out of the mess she has created. As the plot progresses, we see Rita tricking and seducing wealthy men to get their money, making enemies left and right. She also has a rival in the form of a dancer named Molly (Peggy Pearce), who is jealous of Rita's popularity and is not afraid to show it. Meanwhile, Jack is getting closer to solving the murder case, but he is torn between his duty as a detective and his love for Rita. He starts to uncover some shocking truths about Rita's past, leading to a dramatic and unexpected conclusion. Sex was considered a controversial film at the time of its release, as it had scenes that were deemed too explicit for audiences of that era. The film's title alone caused outrage among communities who felt it was inappropriate for the cinema. However, the movie was a box office success and was praised for its performances and direction. Louise Glaum's portrayal of Rita Cavallini was particularly noteworthy, as the actress pushed the boundaries of onscreen femininity by embodying a character that was both glamorous and immoral. Glaum's striking beauty and captivating performance made her a memorable addition to the silent era's femme fatales. The film's director, Fred Niblo, also deserves special mention for his use of light and shadow in creating an atmosphere of intrigue and suspense. Niblo's choice to shoot the movie in a dark and moody fashion matched the story's tone, which was both thrilling and suspenseful. Overall, Sex is a fascinating silent era film that broke many taboos of its time. The themes of murder, greed, and sexual manipulation still hold relevance today, and the performances by Louise Glaum, Irving Cummings, and Peggy Pearce make this movie a must-watch for fans of classic cinema.