Street Angel (1928 film)

Street Angel is a 1928 American silent drama film with a Movietone soundtrack, directed by Frank Borzage, adapted by Harry H. Caldwell (titles), Katherine Hilliker (titles), Philip Klein, Marion Orth and Henry Roberts Symonds from the play Lady Cristilinda by Monckton Hoffe. As one of the early, transitional sound film releases, it did not include recorded dialogue, but used intertitles along with recorded sound effects and musical selections.[2]

Street Angel
Theatrical release poster
Directed byFrank Borzage
Produced byWilliam Fox
Written byPhilip Klein
Henry Roberts Symonds
Monckton Hoffe (play)
StarringJanet Gaynor
Charles Farrell
Alberto Rabagliati
CinematographyPaul Ivano
Ernest Palmer
Distributed byFox Film Corporation
Release date
April 9, 1928 (1928-04-09)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageSilent (English intertitles)
Box office$1.7 million[1]

Street Angel was one of three movies for which Janet Gaynor received an Academy Award for Best Actress in 1929; the others were F. W. Murnau's Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans and Borzage's 7th Heaven. Street Angel was also nominated for Best Art Direction and Best Cinematography.[3]

The acting award was given in 1929 and the other two in 1930, which accords the movie the distinction of being one of only two films to ever receive an Oscar nomination in two different years that was not a foreign language film. The other was The Quiet One nominated in 1949 for Documentary Feature[4] and 1950 for Story and Screenplay.[5]


A spirited young woman (Gaynor) tries to prostitute herself and, failing in that, to steal money, to pay for her seriously ill mother's medicine. She is caught in the act and convicted but escapes from her guards, only to find her mother dead. Fleeing the pursuing police, she joins a traveling carnival, where she meets a vagabond painter (Farrell). Though they fall in love, her past will not leave her alone.


Home video release

The film was thought lost for years, but it is now part of a 12 film collection by Fox that was released in 2008.[6]


  1. "WHICH CINEMA FILMS HAVE EARNED THE MOST MONEY SINCE 1914?". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 4 March 1944. p. 3 Supplement: The Argus Weekend magazine. Retrieved 6 August 2012.
  2. Steffen, James. "Street Angel (1928)". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 12 March 2016.
  3. "NY Times: Street Angel". NY Times. Retrieved 2008-12-06.
  4. Oscars Retrieved 1 October 2018. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. Oscars Retrieved 1 October 2018. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. "Street Angel (1928)". Retrieved September 20, 2014.

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