The Film Daily (1922)

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THE r<i Sunday, February 5, 1922 <S^ DAILY IS Unconvincing and Uninteresting Problem Play Edith Stockton in \ "SHOULD A WIFE WORK?" J. W. Film Corp.— State Rights DIRECTOR ;...... Horace G. Plimpton AUTHOR Not credited SCENARIO BY Not credited CAMERAMAN Not credited AS a' WHOLE Very poor and tiresome production presenting some forced drama and avoiding the pr'oblem STORY Told almost entirely in the titles. Uninteresting and unconvincing DIRECTION Average PHOTOGRAPHY Old fashioned LIGHTINGS Flat STAR Tries hard, but fails to put it over CAST Lacks character and contrast EXTERIORS Poor INTERIORS Plain DETAIL Careless. Titles very poor CHARACTER OF STORY Career lures wife away from home LENGTH OF PRODUCTION About 6,800 feet After several hundred feet of introduction you are finally given a clue to the story when one of the characters says to her husband : "It's my chance. Hasn't a woman a right to a career? You can't give me the things I want, so you must not prevent my earning them if I can." With these words she leaves the home and becomes a star singer in musical comedy. To repeat the issue, another couple are introduced. A struggling inventor marries the college chum of the star singer and in time she too goes out to sing. In this case, however, she uses the money to send to her husband to complete his invention. The bad man is the capitalist who is president of the company mar keting the invention. He sets out to ruin the young man because the young wife refuses to love him. The characters in this problem play seem at all times more concerned about food than they are about anything else. Dinners, teas, coflfee invitations and a scene in a cheap restaurant manage to eat up a good deal of footage while getting the plot no further on. There are many meetings, greetings and introductions, but the real problem is avoided and the drama weakened by rambling continuity. The characters gain little sympathy for themselves or their problems. When they do not lie to themselves they are deceiving each other. One woman keeps her musical comedy rehearsals a secret from her husband before she decides to leave him. The other woman manages the accounts and augments the bank deposits with checks from the church choir master. Later her husband wakes up to the realization that they were living on her money. Both men appear worthless, one takes to drink when his wife leaves him because he does not earn enough money, while the other man leaves his wife to shift for herself while he builds a new invention. Then when he returns he blames her for earning her own living. These are not the characters that will satisfy large American audiences. Edith Stockton plays the part of the college girl who marries the inventor. At times she appears very attractive, but faulty direction and poor photography manage to bring out her worst points. Alice Lowe does good work in the role of the woman who deserts her husband for the stage. Louis Kimball takes the role of the inventor, and Stuart Robson the part of the other husband. In the story a great many inconsistencies occur. The handling and detail are careless. The situations are forced. It contains no plot and little action. See It First Before You Book Box Office Analysis for the Exhibitor "Should a Wife Work?" is certainly not the kind of picture that will send them home satisfied. The title may attract a good many but you are certain to have 'a come-back. In its present form the production runs an hour and thirty-five minutes and as it contains very little action you can well imagine the result. By all means see it first. You know best what your people are like and how far you can go. While the title will suggest a good many tie-ups, it would certainly be best to soft pedal all the way through. You might slip it into a double feature bill if the other picture is a feature comedy, but don't make a fuss about it. It will do you little good and is very apt to make it harder for you to put over another problem play that is deserving and satisfying.