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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Why Be Good?
Ad for the film
Directed byWilliam A. Seiter
Written byPaul Perez
Screenplay byCarey Wilson
Story byCarey Wilson
Produced byJohn McCormick
StarringColleen Moore
CinematographySidney Hickox
Edited byTerry O. Morse
Distributed byWarner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Release date
  • February 28, 1929 (1929-02-28)
Running time
84 minutes
CountryUnited States
English intertitles

Why Be Good? is a 1929 American silent comedy film produced by First National Pictures starring Colleen Moore and Neil Hamilton. The film has no audible dialogue but is accompanied by a Vitaphone soundtrack with music, sound effects and some synchronized singing.[1]

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Winthrop Peabody Jr. and his friends prepare to frolic into the night before he must begin work the following day at his father's department store. Before departing, Winthrop Peabody Sr. lectures his son about women and warns him to avoid the store's female employees.

Pert Kelly, after winning a dance contest, is wooed by gentlemen of questionable character. Pert catches the eye of Peabody Jr., who drives her home and schedules a date for the following night. Because she was out late, Pert is tardy to work and must report to the personnel office, where she is surprised to find Peabody Jr. working. Peabody Sr. sees what has happened and fires Pert.

Peabody Jr. explains to Pert that it was not he who had terminated her, and they schedule another date. Lavish gifts arrive for Pert to wear to the next date. Her father admonishes her about the lack of virtues of the modern man, and Peabody Sr. repeats his warning to his son.

On the next date, Peabody Jr. has devised a test of Pert's virtue. When he tries to push her past her personal limits, she protests and passes his test. They are married that night and prove her virtue to Peabody Sr., who cannot now refute it.


Preservation status

Why Be Good?[2] had been considered a lost film for many decades, with only the film's Vitaphone soundtrack still in existence. In the late 1990s, a 35mm print of the film was discovered in an Italian archive.[1] Restoration work began in 2012 and was completed in 2014, funded by Warner Bros. and The Vitaphone Project.

The U.S. premiere of the restoration was hosted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Bing Theater on September 6, 2014.[3] This same restoration was released on DVD-R by the Warner Archive Collection on October 28, 2014[4] and screened at New York's Film Forum on November 9, 2014. It has also aired on the Turner Classic Movies channel.

See also



  1. ^ a b Why Be Good? at
  2. ^ "Media History Digital Library : Free Texts : Download & Streaming : Internet Archive".
  3. ^ ""Why Be Good?" Celebrates The Jazz Age". September 9, 2014. Retrieved December 7, 2014.
  4. ^ "Why Be Good?". Retrieved December 7, 2014.


External links

This page was last edited on 7 August 2023, at 04:19
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