Mary Pickford's all talkie version of this Broadway play has two surprises. One is for Pickford fans, who will find the old time romping hoyden with the golden curls displaced by a grown-up young woman with bobbed hair and adult ideas. The other surprise will be encountered by those who saw "Coquette" as a stage play. Miss Pickford has made a raft of changes in the original story. "Coquette" is still the story of a little Southern butterfly and a young boy of poor family. The boy is shot by the girl's father, who believes his daughter has been wronged. On trial for his life, the old man comes to realize he has killed an innocent youth and he shoots himself. That leaves the lonely Mary walking off alone in the last shot down a dimly lighted village street at sunset.
In the original the girl was about to become a mother as her father was brought to trial. So she killed herself, hoping to save her daddy. Although much of the emotional force of the story is removed by changes, Miss Pickford turns in a remarkable performance. Her voice records nicely — and she reveals surprising emotional force and many poignant moments.
Take along a handkerchief or two for your tears. You will need them. And your screen season won't be complete until you see the new Mary. Remember, too, that on this film she staked a career that took twenty years to build. You will like Johnny Mack Brown as the boy lover who meets death. A good performance is turned in by John St. Polls as the father.'
Photoplay June 1929
Books with substantial mentioning of Coquette