23 October 2003 | ballo_j
Amazing historical record
This, of course, is the silent film version of David Belasco's Madame Butterfly, made shortly before this into the opera by Puccini. I saw it many years ago on late night TV in New York in the 60's I think. The stage play, and the opera were based upon the novella by Luther Long. The entire text of this is on the web and is most interesting in that Cio- Cio San does NOT commit hara-kiri at the end. Rather she tries to and screws it up and she, Sasuki and her little boy leave the night Pinkerton comes to deliver the bad news.
I find it impossible to give any sort of objective judgment of this film; firstly because standards of production have changed so drastically over the century since it was made, and secondly, because the opera's music and mise en scene so dominate our thinking. Nevertheless I found it fascinating. I cannot believe that I am the only person in the country that has seen it and stumbled onto this site!!!