Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Evening Clothes - A Round-up of Reviews

Evening Clothes, Louise Brooks' eighth film, was officially released on this day in 1927. The film is a comedy-drama about a French gentleman farmer who, spurned by his bride, goes to Paris in order to become sophisticated enough to win her back. The film is lost, as are all of Brooks' films from 1927.

Evening Clothes was directed by Luther Reed. Adolphe Menjou played Lucien d'Artois, Virginia Valli was Germaine, Noah Beery played Lazarre, and Louise Brooks was Fox Trot. Notably, this is one of the rare silent films films in which Brooks did not appear in her signature bob. And not surprisingly, many reviewers and critics of the time commented on the actress' different hair style.

Evening Clothes proved popular in its day. Here is a round up of newspaper and magazine reviews and articles drawn from the Louise Brooks Society archive.

Parsons, Louella O. "Evening Clothes an Entertaining Story." Los Angeles Examiner, March 5, 1927. --- "When you see the show girl, Louise Brooks, cavorting about with a frizzled top you will see why Famous Players Lasky is grooming her for bigger and better things. She fares much better than either Miss Tashman or Mr. Beery, who only appear at long intervals."

Yorke, Hal. "Evening Clothes Presents Menjou at Metropolitan." Los Angeles Daily Illustrated News, March 5, 1927.
--- "Louise Brooks - yes, the one you dream about - is as alluring and pert as ever."

anonymous. "Menjou Picture Outstanding for Hirsute Effects." Los Angeles Times, March 6, 1927. --- "Louise Brooks, who plays one of the featured roles in the picture, has sacrificed the distinctive bob."

Taylor, Ken. "You'd Hardly Know Menjou with a Beard." Los Angeles Evening Express, March 7, 1927.
--- "Louise Brooks, whose haunting vivacity has necessitated the restringing of more than one male's heartstrings." - review in Los Angeles, California newspaper

Kreisman, Louise. "Evening Clothes At the Metropolitan." Daily Bruin, March 10, 1927.
--- "Louise Brooks, as a curely headed chorus girl . . . The rest of the time she excells in flippancy and heartlessness." - review in UCLA student newspaper

Beaton, Welford. "High School Girls Select Mr. Menjou." and "Some Good and Not So Good Direction." Film Spectator, March 19, 1927.
--- "There are three girls who do very well in Evening Clothes - Virginia Valli, Louise Brooks and Lilyan Tashman. . . . I was glad to see further evidence of Paramount's dawning consciousness that Louise Brooks is not composed solely of legs. They work her from the knees up in this picture and it begins to look as if she were headed for a high place."

anonymous. "Adolphe is Himself Again." New York Telegram, March 21, 1927.
--- "It is a delightful little comedy. . . . Virginia Valli and Louise Brooks (permanently waved) appear both provocative and Parisienne as the leading ladies." 

Hall, Mordaunt. "Bankruptcy and Love." New York Times, March 21, 1927.
--- "Ms. Brooks, with a change in her eyebrows and curly hair, is stunning."

Cannon, Regina. "Menjou's Beard Surprise in Film Evening Clothes." New York American, March 22, 1927.
--- "Louise Brooks is again cast as a 'lady of the evening' and makes her role pert and amusing. You won't recognize Miss Brooks at first, for she is wearing her hair curled over her head. This is too bad, for it makes her look just like a thousand other attractive girls. Louise achieved distinction with her straight-banged bob."

C., O. "The Current Cinema." New Yorker, March 26, 1927.
--- short mention in film column "Louise Brooks makes herself more able than usual by the aid of a trick haircut."

O., H.H. "Stage and Screen." Ann Arbor Times News, April 10, 1927.
--- "Louise Brooks, as Fox Trot, a pert little inhabitute of the Parisian cafes, adds her usual snappy characterizations."

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