Trilby (1914)

Film details


Based on the novel by George Du Maurier.

Three English art students living in Paris are asked for a loan by Svengali, a musician lving in the studio below them. He plays to them on the piano and they are joined by Trilby, an artist's model. Trilby tries to sing but is tone deaf; Svengali recognises that she has unusual vocal cords. Trilby is subject to violent headaches and is cured of an attack by Svengali's mesmeric powers; Svengali decides that he can make a great opera singer of her by using his powers. Trilby refuses the love of one of the art students, Little Billee, because she considers herself unworthy of him. Svengali overhears his proposal and endeavours to kill Billee's love for Trilby by showing him Trilby posing in the nude for an art class. Disgusted, Billee leaves for Florence, and Trilby vows never to pose in the nude again. Billee is persuaded to return to the studio, and he and Trilby agree to marry, to Svengali's great discomforture.


Cast & Credits

Latest from the BFI

  • Latest from the BFI

    Latest news, features and opinion.

More information

Films, TV and people

  • Films, TV and people

    Film lists and highlights from BFI Player.

More information

Sight & Sound magazine

  • Sight & Sound magazine

    Reviews, interviews and features from the international film magazine.

More information

Back to the top