Demanding a whiskey (which she is offered the chance to receive in a pail), Greta Garbo made her first, historic spoken words in this film. (I have to imagine audiences of the era must have been horrified to hear how deep and thickly accented it was.) The story is rambling melodrama that must have felt right at home when it first aired, in the heart of the Great Depression, comprising vignettes that include a souse returning to town from Minnesota (!), a sinking boat, a trip to Coney Island, a broken engagement, and -- of course -- a past that will have to be revealed in the end. Extremely popular in its day, the film was shot a second time on the same sets but with a different crew and in German. The DVD includes both versions, allowing you to nod off before the end twice.
Valentino's final film, at the age of 31, finished right before he died of a perforated ulcer. Valentino takes two roles in this sequel, again as the desert prince and his father as well (the original Sheik). Unfortunately, like sequels today, The Son of the Sheik is clearly a financial endeavor over a creative one. The story adds nothing over the original (the emphasis being on goofy humor) and the spectacle isn't even as grand, with much of the movie shot indoors instead of on the glorious sands of the desert.
Dreadfully boring romance "classic" has Garbo as a 1847's French courtesan, trapped in a loveless relationship with a rich man while forsaking her younger, hotter lover. Cliched and endless, and while it was probably original in 1937, the novelty of the film is far from assured today. Desperately overacted by Garbo, many claim Camille is her best work. Sorry, I'll stick with Grand Hotel.