Commissioned by MGM to film Franz Lehar's operetta, Stroheim characteristically tried to bury it within a larger framework of his own devising. He added a prologue that finally occupied more than half the total running time. Stroheim makes everything possible out of the grotesqueries, most notably the baron's foot fetishism and the sadist's ignominious death, but his elaborate scheme of erotic contrasts is finally engulfed by the frivolous artifice of the original operetta. The result is stylish and spasmodically witty, but rarely more.
The Merry Widow
Cast and crew
|Director:||Erich von Stroheim|
|Screenwriter:||Erich von Stroheim, Benjamin Glazer, Marion Ainslee|