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Sadie Thompson Photos

Movie Info

A young, beautiful prostitute named Sadie Thompson (Gloria Swanson) arrives on the South Pacific island of Pago Pago looking for honest work, and falls for Timothy O'Hara (Raoul Walsh), an American sailor who is unfazed by her unsavory past. However, Mr. Davidson (Lionel Barrymore), a missionary who arrived on the island at the same time, aims to "save" Sadie from her sinful life and petitions to have her separated from her beau and deported back to San Francisco.

Cast & Crew

Gloria Swanson
Sadie Thompson
Lionel Barrymore
Alfred Davidson
Raoul Walsh
Sergeant Timothy "Tim" O'Hara
Blanche Frederici
Mrs. Alfred Davidson
Charles Lane
Dr. Angus McPhail
Florence Midgely
Mrs. Angus McPhail
Will Stanton
Quartermaster Bates
Raoul Walsh
Screenwriter
George Barnes
Cinematographer
Robert Kurrle
Cinematographer
Oliver T. Marsh
Cinematographer
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Critic Reviews for Sadie Thompson

All Critics (6) | Fresh (5) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Sadie Thompson

  • Apr 01, 2017
    Religious hypocrisy is the main theme of 'Sadie Thompson', based on a short story by W. Somerset Maugham. Sharing the same hotel in Pago Pago, a religious reformer (Lionel Barrymore) takes a dim view of a 'loose' woman (Gloria Swanson), and after failing to get her to change her ways, lobbies the local governor to get her shipped back to San Francisco. I liked this version a bit better than the 1932 version with Walter Huston and Joan Crawford because Barrymore is so brilliant, so harshly upright but at the same time, hinting at a demonic side as he glowers away. Despite the movie being silent, director Raoul Walsh (who also plays Swanson's love interest) delivers a couple of compelling scenes with Barrymore trying to exert his will, Swanson resisting, and the rain coming down, unrelenting. Swanson also lets loose with her anger, and in one funny moment it's obvious she's cursed a blue streak, as the ladies around her cover their ears and scamper off. 1928 was the first year for the Oscars and Swanson would be nominated for her performance. I admire her for it, but admire her more for producing the movie despite pressure because of its content, and considered a slightly higher rating. The film itself is not in that great a shape, and while the last couple of minutes are mostly gone forever, we're fortunate that Dennis Doros restored it as best possible mostly with carefully selected stills. Watching this one has you clearly thinking you're getting a window into the past, but at the same time, aren't these themes of religious overreach still so prevalent today? Thank you Gloria Swanson.
    Antonius B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 06, 2014
    The version that I saw was crackling with wear and took me out of the film a bit I'm afraid. Gloria Swanson who is so terrific in Sunset Boulevard doesn't quite measure up here.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 24, 2013
    the first adaptation of maugham's famous story, the film stars gloria swanson and director raoul walsh as well as an over the top lionel barrymore as the self appointed moral authority of the islands. swanson was nominated for an oscar here and walsh is terrific as the marine who falls for her. great screen presence! his acting career ended shortly after this when he lost an eye to a fateful jackrabbit through the windshield encounter and became the first of hollywood's dashing eye-patch wearing directors
    Stella D Super Reviewer

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