Lilac Time



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George Fitzmaurice directed this romantic World War I drama, which was First National Pictures' entry into the epic war/romance genre popular in the late 1920s (The Big Parade, Wings). Colleen Moore stars as the French gamin Jeannine Bertholot who is a good luck charm to a seven-man platoon of the British Air Force that uses the lilac fields of a small French village as their base. Jeannine is the niece of Madame Berthelot (Eugenie Besserer), who lodges and cares for the platoon. After a bumpy start, one of the flyers from the platoon, Philip Blythe (Gary Cooper) falls in love with her. Philip is reluctant to tell Jeannine that he loves her, but one morning before a dangerous mission, he declares his love. During the mission, Philip is shot down, and Jeannine frantically arranges for an ambulance crew to remove Philip's body from the wreckage. But during the rescue operations, Jeannine loses sight of Philip. To find him again, she begins an exhausting search of all the military hospitals, hoping to see Philip for one last time. ~ Paul Brenner, Rovi

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