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List of Norma Shearer Movies: Ranked Best To Worst

1. The Restless Sex (1920)
14
5
The Restless Sex
14
5

The Restless Sex is a drama film which revolves around a restless and adventurous young woman named Stephanie who decides to get married to Oswald, an art student, when her childhood sweetheart Jim leaves for Paris to pursue his writing career. When Jim returns and finds out, he tries to win Stephanie back.

Starring:
Carlyle Blackwell, Charles Lane, Ralph Kellard, Marion Davies
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard, Leon D'Usseau
2. The Women (1939)
16
2
The Women
16
2

Mary Haines lives a wealthy and happy life with her wealthy financier husband Stephen and their little daughter Molly. But her life takes a turn after her friend finds out that Stephen is having an affair.

Role:
Mrs. Stephen Haines - Mary
Directed By:
3. He Who Gets Slapped (1924)
13
2
He Who Gets Slapped
13
2
Role:
Consuelo
Starring:
Bela Lugosi, John Gilbert, Ford Sterling, Lon Chaney
Directed By:
Victor Sjöström
4. Way Down East (1920)
13
3
Way Down East
13
3

Lennox is a rich and good-looking womanizer, who tricks a poor country girl named Anna into a fake marriage. When Anna gets pregnant, Lennox leaves her, and she is forced to deal with the baby on her own. The baby eventually dies, after which she manages to get a job with a rich man named Squire Bartlett. Soon, Bartlett’s son, David, falls for her. But due to her tragic past, Anna rejects his advances.   

Starring:
Lillian Gish, Lowell Sherman, Richard Barthelmess, Mrs. David Landau, Burr McIntosh
Directed By:
5. The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg (1927)
14
3
The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg
14
3
Role:
Kathi
Starring:
Jean Hersholt, Gustav von Seyffertitz, Ramon Novarro, Philippe De Lacy
Directed By:
Ernst Lubitsch, John M. Stahl
6. Marie Antoinette (1938)
12
3
Marie Antoinette
12
3
Role:
Marie Antoinette
Starring:
John Barrymore, Joseph Schildkraut, Anita Louise, Tyrone Power
Directed By:
W.S. Van Dyke, Julien Duvivier
7. The Tower of Lies (1925)
11
3
The Tower of Lies
11
3
Role:
Glory or Goldie
Starring:
Claire McDowell, Lon Chaney, Ian Keith, William Haines
Directed By:
Victor Sjöström
8. The Trial of Mary Dugan (1929)
12
2
The Trial of Mary Dugan
12
2
Role:
Mary Elizabeth Dugan
Starring:
H.B. Warner, Lilyan Tashman, Lewis Stone, Raymond Hackett
Directed By:
Bayard Veiller
9. Escape (1940)
13
2
Escape
13
2
Role:
Countess von Treck
Starring:
Alla Nazimova, Conrad Veidt, Robert Taylor, Felix Bressart
Directed By:
Mervyn LeRoy
10. After Midnight (1927)
13
2
After Midnight
13
2
Role:
Mary Miller
Starring:
Lawrence Gray, Gwen Lee, Eddie Sturgis, Philip Sleeman
Directed By:
Monta Bell
11. The Barretts of Wimpole Street (1934)
14
2
The Barretts of Wimpole Street
14
2

This romantic drama film takes us to 19th century London, and tells the story of patriarch Edward Moulton Barrett and his children. Edward is quite strict towards all nine of them. In addition, he has forbidden his children from getting married as well. This causes problems with the youngest daughter Henrietta, as she is in love with Captain Surtees Cook, with whom she wants to get married. The only child who abides by Edward’s rules is his daughter Elizabeth. Since she is bedridden due to her chronic illness, she doesn’t seem to mind. However, her outlook on life changes after she meets Robert Browning, a young poet.

Role:
Elizabeth Barrett
Starring:
Charles Laughton, Fredric March, Katharine Alexander, Maureen O'Sullivan
Directed By:
Sidney Franklin
12. Smilin' Through (1932)
13
2
Smilin' Through
13
2

The plot of the movie, adapted from the 1919 play by Jane Cowl and Jane Murfin, concerns John Carteret who looses his fiancé, Moonyeen Clare on the wedding day. Years later, he is given the custody of a five year old Kathleen, Moonyeen‘s niece. A grown up Kathleen is the mirror image of her aunt and John adores her. However, he is aghast when she falls for the son of the man who killed Moonyeen.

Role:
Kathleen (credited) / Moonyeen (uncredited)
Starring:
Fredric March, Leslie Howard, Ralph Forbes, O.P. Heggie
Directed By:
Sidney Franklin
13. A Lady of Chance (1928)
12
2
A Lady of Chance
12
2
Role:
Dolly Morgan aka Angel Face
Starring:
Eugenie Besserer, Lowell Sherman, Gwen Lee, Johnny Mack Brown
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
14. The Divorcee (1930)
14
2
The Divorcee
14
2

After three years of marriage, Ted begins to cheat on his wife Jerry. In order to teach him a lesson, she decides to pursue an affair with his friend Don. Eventually, this leads to a divorce.  While Ted struggles with depression, and sinks into alcoholism, Jerry reunites with Paul, who was in love with her, before her marriage with Ted.  

Role:
Jerry
Starring:
Conrad Nagel, Chester Morris, Robert Montgomery, Florence Eldridge
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
Awards:
Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role
15. Private Lives (1931)
12
2
Private Lives
12
2

Amanda and Elyot, who used to be once married, meet each other unexpectedly during their honeymoons. They soon realize that they are still attracted to one another, and try to rekindle their love.

Role:
Amanda Prynne
Starring:
Jean Hersholt, Robert Montgomery, Reginald Denny, Una Merkel
Directed By:
Sidney Franklin
16. Upstage (1926)
11
2
Upstage
11
2
Role:
Dolly Haven
Starring:
Dorothy Phillips, Gwen Lee, Tenen Holtz, Oscar Shaw
Directed By:
Monta Bell
17. The Devil's Circus (1926)
10
3
The Devil's Circus
10
3
Role:
Mary
Starring:
Claire McDowell, Carmel Myers, Charles Emmett Mack, John Miljan,
Directed By:
Benjamin Christensen
18. A Free Soul (1931)
12
2
A Free Soul
TV-PG
12
2

Stephen Ashe is an alcoholic lawyer who defends a notorious gambler named Ace who was the accused in a murder case. Meanwhile, his daughter Jan Ashe, who has just broken her engagement to polo player Dwight Winthrop finds herself attracted to Ace, and they begin a relationship. Stephen obviously doesn’t approve of this relationship and tries to break it off.

Role:
Jan Ashe
Starring:
Lionel Barrymore, Clark Gable, Leslie Howard, James Gleason
Directed By:
Clarence Brown
19. Romeo and Juliet (1936)
12
2
Romeo and Juliet
12
2

Based on the famous play by William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet is a romantic drama film which tells the story of Romeo, son of Montague, who falls passionately in love with Juliet, daughter of Capulet. They get married in secret, since their feuding families would never approve of their relationship. Everything seems to be going well, until Romeo’s best friend Mercutio, is killed by Juliet’s cousin Tybalt.

Role:
Juliet - Daughter to Capulet
Starring:
John Barrymore, Leslie Howard, Edna May Oliver, Basil Rathbone
Directed By:
20. Let Us Be Gay (1930)
12
2
Let Us Be Gay
12
2
Role:
Kitty Brown
Starring:
Marie Dressler, Rod La Rocque, Hedda Hopper, Gilbert Emery
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
21. Idiot's Delight (1939)
12
4
Idiot's Delight
12
4
Role:
Irene
Starring:
Clark Gable, Edward Arnold, Charles Coburn, Joseph Schildkraut
Directed By:
Clarence Brown
22. Riptide (1934)
11
2
Riptide
11
2

Lord Phillip Rexford and Mary is a happily married couple of London. When Rexford goes to America for business, Mary visits a relative in Riviera and encounters her ex-beau Tommie Treal, who pursues her into a situation that creates scandal. Rexford, refusing to believe Mary, grows distant and decides to divorce her. But the distrust may lead to problems in their lives. 

Role:
Mary
Starring:
Walter Brennan, Richard 'Skeets' Gallagher, Herbert Marshall, Robert Montgomery
Directed By:
Edmund Goulding
23. The Flapper (1920)
10
3
The Flapper
10
3

Ginger is a young girl with likes to flirt with men. Due to her wild nature, her father feels that it is best to send her away to a boarding school. There, she falls for a man who rides past their school every day. However, things get complicated for her when she is framed when their school’s safe gets robbed.

Starring:
Warren Cook, William P. Carleton, Olive Thomas, Theodore Westman Jr.
Directed By:
Alan Crosland
24. The Christmas Party (1931)
10
4
The Christmas Party
10
4

The Christmas Party is a short drama film, which tells the story of Jackie, who is willing to throw a Christmas party for his friends on his football team. However, he is unsure how to begin working on it, and therefore, has to take help.

Starring:
Jimmy Durante, Jackie Cooper, Lionel Barrymore, Clark Gable, Wallace Beery, Marion Davies
Directed By:
Charles Reisner
25. Lady of the Night (1925)
10
2
Lady of the Night
TV-G
10
2

This is a silent romantic drama film focusing on a convict’s daughter, who earns her living as a taxi dancer. Saved from an unwanted advance by a friend of her boyfriend, she falls for him.  Also in love with him is the daughter of the judge who sent her father to prison 18 years ago. 

Role:
Molly Helmer / Florence Banning
Starring:
Joan Crawford, George K. Arthur, Malcolm McGregor, Dale Fuller
Directed By:
Monta Bell
26. We Were Dancing (1942)
11
3
We Were Dancing
11
3
Role:
Victoria Anastasia 'Vicki' Wilomirska
Starring:
Melvyn Douglas, Gail Patrick, Lee Bowman, Marjorie Main
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
27. The Last of Mrs. Cheyney (1929)
11
2
The Last of Mrs. Cheyney
11
2
Role:
Fay Cheyney
Starring:
Hedda Hopper, George Barraud, Basil Rathbone, Herbert Bunston
Directed By:
Sidney Franklin
28. A Clouded Name (1923)
10
3
A Clouded Name
10
3
Role:
Marjorie Dare
Starring:
Richard Neill, Gladden James, Charles Miller, Yvonne Logan
Directed By:
Austin O. Huhn
29. Strangers May Kiss (1931)
9
3
Strangers May Kiss
9
3

An adaptation of Ursula Parrott’s synonymous book, the film tells the story of Lisbeth, who believes that freedom is an essential part of love and marriage. Despite having a loyal fiancée in Steve, she enters into a steamy relationship with Alan, a journalist. But when she hears that he is married and is going abroad, she begins to react differently. 

Role:
Lisbeth
Starring:
Ray Milland, Irene Rich, Neil Hamilton, Robert Montgomery
Directed By:
George Fitzmaurice
30. Her Cardboard Lover (1942)
11
4
Her Cardboard Lover
11
4

The Cardboard Lover is a romantic comedy film, revolving around a wealthy woman, who wants to stop her ex-boyfriend from pursuing her. Therefore, she hires a young songwriter who is in need of money, to pretend to be her new lover. However, problem arises when the man actually falls in love with her. 

Role:
Consuelo Croyden
Starring:
Elizabeth Patterson, Frank McHugh, Robert Taylor, George Sanders
Directed By:
31. Their Own Desire (1929)
10
2
Their Own Desire
10
2
Role:
Lally
Starring:
Belle Bennett, Lewis Stone, Helene Millard, Robert Montgomery
Directed By:
E. Mason Hopper
32. Lucretia Lombard (1923)
9
3
Lucretia Lombard
9
3
Role:
Mimi Winship (as Norma Sherer)
Starring:
Marc McDermott, Alec B. Francis, Monte Blue, Irene Rich,
Directed By:
Jack Conway
33. Strange Interlude (1932)
9
3
Strange Interlude
9
3

After finding out that there is an insanity running in her husband’s family, Nina Leeds decides to have a love child with a doctor, and lets her husband believes the child is his.  

Role:
Nina Leeds
Starring:
Clark Gable, Alexander Kirkland, Ralph Morgan, Robert Young
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
34. The Hollywood Revue of 1929 (1929)
9
2
The Hollywood Revue of 1929
9
2
Role:
Self
35. The Actress (1928)
10
2
The Actress
10
2
Role:
Rose Trelawny
Starring:
Owen Moore, Lee Moran, Roy D'Arcy, Gwen Lee
Directed By:
Sidney Franklin
36. The Wolf Man (1924)
9
3
The Wolf Man
9
3
Role:
Elizabeth Gordon
Starring:
John Gilbert, Eugene Pallette, George Barraud, Alma Francis
Directed By:
Edmund Mortimer
37. The Stolen Jools (1931)
8
3
The Stolen Jools
8
3

This 1931 short film revolves around the stolen pearls of Norma Shearer. After the theft, a detective is sent to interrogate the party guests, most of which are famous Hollywood stars. 

Starring:
Maurice Chevalier, Irene Dunne, Barbara Stanwyck, Buster Keaton, Edward G. Robinson, Loretta Young, Gary Cooper
Directed By:
William C. McGann, John G. Adolfi, Thomas Atkins, Harold S. Bucquet, Victor Heerman
38. Empty Hands (1924)
8
3
Empty Hands
8
3
Role:
Claire Endicott
Starring:
Jack Holt, Charles Clary, Gertrude Olmstead, Hazel Keener
Directed By:
39. The Star Boarder (1919)
8
4
The Star Boarder
8
4
Starring:
William Hauber, Larry Semon, Frank Alexander, Lucille Carlisle
Directed By:
Larry Semon
40. Pretty Ladies (1925)
5
1
Pretty Ladies
5
1

Pretty Ladies is a drama comedy film which tells the story of a female comic Maggie who takes a fall off the stage and ends up landing on the drum of Al, a musician. They eventually fall for one another, and get married. Soon, Al becomes a famous songwriter, while Maggie becomes a stay-at-home mother. Things get complicated when Al starts having feelings for another woman.

Starring:
Carole Lombard, Joan Crawford, Lilyan Tashman, Zasu Pitts
Directed By:
Monta Bell
41. A Slave of Fashion (1925)
4
1
A Slave of Fashion
4
1

Katherine Emerson is a girl from a small town who wants to experience all the luxuries in life. Therefore, she leaves her town behind and sets off to New York, looking for a better life. She is soon involved in a train wreck where another woman, a co-passenger is killed. After finding the deceased woman’s purse, she learns that the latter was invited to spend six months in a luxury apartment in Manhattan. Therefore, she decides to assume the identity of the victim.

Role:
Katherine Emerson
Starring:
Joan Crawford, Lew Cody, William Haines, Mary Carr
Directed By:
Hobart Henley
42. The Waning Sex (1926)
12
2
The Waning Sex
12
2
Role:
Nina Duane
Starring:
Conrad Nagel, George K. Arthur, Mary McAllister, Charles McHugh
Directed By:
Robert Z. Leonard
43. Waking Up the Town (1925)
11
3
Waking Up the Town
11
3
Role:
Mary Ellen Hope
Starring:
Claire McDowell, Herbert Prior, Jack Pickford, Alec B. Francis,
Directed By:
James Cruze
44. His Secretary (1925)
10
2
His Secretary
10
2
Role:
Ruth Lawrence
Starring:
Willard Louis, Lew Cody, Gwen Lee, Karl Dane
Directed By:
Hobart Henley
45. Anniversary (1963)
9
3
Anniversary
9
3
Role:
(archiveFootage)
Starring:
Mary Pickford, Walter Huston, Marie Dressler, Walter Pidgeon
Directed By:
William Weintraub

Norma Shearer Awards

Academy Awards
The Divorcee Best Actress in a Leading Role 1930