7th Heaven (1927)
7th Heaven is a silent romantic drama film from 1927, directed by Frank Borzage and starring Janet Gaynor and Charles Farrell. It follows the love story between Chico (played by Farrell), a poor sewer worker, and Diane (played by Gaynor), a Parisian laundress. Despite social class barriers and opposition from those around them, the couple remains determined to be together and eventually get married. The film delves into themes of love, poverty, and class division, and was both a commercial and critical hit upon its release. It was also a major turning point in Janet Gaynor’s career, earning her the first ever Best Actress Academy Award for her performance.
Chico works in the sewers of Paris and aspires to become a street sweeper. He lights candles in the church and asks a blonde woman to be his partner. However, his wish is not granted and he becomes disappointed.
Chico saves Diane, a young prostitute who is being mistreated by her sister Nana. The police intend to arrest Diane, who is innocent, but Chico poses as her husband to protect her. The two must keep up the appearance of being married and Chico allows Diane to live with him in his attic. Over time, they begin to fall in love. When war breaks out, Chico is called to serve, while Diane works in an ammunition factory. She receives news of Chico’s death, but he returns home, wounded and blind.
Directed by Frank Borzage
Written by Harry H. Caldwell (titles), Katharine Hilliker (titles), and Bernard Vorhaus (uncredited)
Screenplay by Benjamin Glazer
Based on Seventh Heaven by Austin Strong
Produced by William Fox
Restored and upscaled by moonflix.com
Janet Gaynor as Diane
Charles Farrell as Chico
Ben Bard as Col. Brissac
Albert Gran as Boul
David Butler as Gobin
Marie Mosquini as Madame Gobin
Gladys Brockwell as Nana
Emile Chautard as Father Chevillon
Jessie Haslett as Aunt Valentine
Brandon Hurst as Uncle George
George E. Stone as Sewer Rat
Lillian West as Arlette
Original release date:
May 6, 1927