Culture conflict -- Drama, International relations -- Drama, Russians -- France -- Drama



Greta Garbo, Melvyn Douglas, Ina Claire, Bela Lugosi,

“‘Garbo laughs!’ said the ads for Ninotchka . . . an event on a par with ‘Garbo talks!,’ the 1930 slogan that heralded her talkie debut in Anna Christie. Garbo—the paradigm for all stars in her beauty and mystery and final inaccessibility—was now a screwball heroine, too. And the mystery compounded: she was funny. . . . One of the elements of the Garbo mystique was always the degree to which she could make idealism seem as much a felt human need as love or food. So that in Ninotchka she can speak of getting ‘foreign currency to buy tractors’ (Lubitsch gives her a full glowing close-up) and be powerfully moving as she does so. Garbo, Lubitsch, and the screwball comedy come together in this film in a most astonishing result: the closest thing to a convincing socialist heroine the English-speaking cinema has yet produced. It’s a nice payoff to the screwball tradition: that it had the freedom to offer even this surprise” (James Harvey, Romantic Comedy).

  • Billy Wilder
  • Walter Reisch
  • Charles Brackett
Based On
  • a story by Melchior Lengyel

  • William Daniels
Print Info
  • B&W
  • DCP
  • 110 mins
  • Warner Bros. Classics

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Ninotchka (program note), Cinematheque Ontario/a division of Toronto International Film Festival Group, 2005

Laughter in paradise: the films of Ernst Lubitsch (program note), Cinematheque Ontario/a division of Toronto International Film Festival Group, Scott Eyman, 2000

The American comedy (program note), Wadsworth Atheneum, Diana Prince, 1976

Garbo (program note), Film Society of Lincoln Center, 1968

Ninotchka (book excerpt)

Romantic comedy in Hollywood from Lubitsch to Sturges -- excerpt (book excerpt), James Harvey

The Lubitsch touch (program note)

Re-visions: let's do it again (program note), Toronto Film Society, Barrie Hayne

Ninotchka (program note), Dartmouth Film Society, David Stewart Hull

The film as art (program note), Minneapolis Society of Fine Arts, George Amberg

Displaying 10 of 10 publicly available documents.

View all Ninotchka documentation on CineFiles.