An awesome quote from Anna Sten in Nana (1934), “It’s men who make women whatever they are.”
The line, in case you don’t feel it, is in response to the judgment of women in general and her mother specifically. As soon as Sten (as Nana) utters the retort, I was smitten with this tale of a poor girl who scratches her way out of poverty to become a streetwalker (if you find yourself judging, recall that line!) and then finds work in the theater — where she uses her wiles to flirt her way into lead roles, public adoration & high society. But when she falls in love…
Well, she’s thwarted by the man’s jealous brother, who plots & schemes to have Nana for himself! (See how true that line is?!)
Nana (aka Lady of the Boulevards in the UK) was a vehicle for Anna Sten, a Russian actress Sam Goldwyn was determined to make the next Garbo or Dietrich (listening to Sten sing, you can really hear the comparison to Dietrich). But Sten never endeared herself to film fans in America… Some blame the fact that she never did learn English very well. Whatever the reason, Anna Sten was dubbed Goldwyn’s Folly.
Perhaps this is why I’ve never heard of the film before… Watching it, I really enjoyed it — save for predictable Code ending. *Boo Hiss*
Totally worth watching, no matter what film critics say.
Sam Goldwyn did not pay for this post *wink*