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Robert Z. Leonard
Rod La Rocque,
In the western frontier town of Cross Creek storekeeper George Temple is a polite and soft spoken man with a secret past.When three bank robbers on the lam stop in town to change horses George Temple's past comes back to haunt him.
Dolly, alias "Angel Face," meets a naive young man at a hotel who appears to be rich. Thinking she's found an easy mark, she marries him, only to find out that the plantation he was bragging about belongs to a neighbor, and his fortune is more speculative than real. In spite of herself, she falls in love with him. Written by
Cute story but talented actors needed to tone it down
Too much mugging by the top-billed actors leave Johnny Mack Brown and Eugenie Besserer the most believable members of an actually very talented cast. In fact, "A Lady of Chance" is much like an old-time pantomime at times, and not at all subtle.
Even in 1928, Lowell Sherman was already a veteran, but so was Norma Shearer, who, though only 26 at this time (two years older than Brown), had been making films since about 1919.
Gwen Lee, who was much more restrained, had also made many movies by 1928 but hadn't started until about three years before. (She just had a very busy three years.)
Brown was still a relative newcomer, but had amazing screen presence. He eventually acted opposite such grand ladies as Joan Crawford and Greta Garbo, among others.
After a while, though, he stuck with westerns and was one of the most popular western stars.
Those of us who love westerns were the beneficiaries, but I wonder if Mr. Brown would have been any happier had he been an A picture fixture.
Again, in "A Lady of Chance," he really stood out, showing talent and looks and ability at underplaying the country boy intended to be a sucker.
There are no other surprises in this pleasant movie. The ending seems to be tacked on, but I don't think anybody would want another.
I do recommend "A Lady of Chance," which I saw on Turner Classic Movies 3 November 2015 during a night of Norma Shearer films. (That night it was followed by "The Student Prince in Old Heidelberg" in which she was adorable, charming, lovely, enticing ... just wonderful. And more restrained though still exuberant. Pretty nearly perfect.)
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