6.1/10
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9 user 5 critic

The Big Pond (1930)

A tour guide in Venice romances a visiting American tourist whose father owns a chewing-gum factory back in the U.S. She sets out to convince her skeptical father to bring the tour guide to America and give him a job in the plant.

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(story), (play) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Pierre Mirande
...
Barbara Billings
...
Mr. Billings
Marion Ballou ...
Mrs. Billings
Andrée Corday ...
Toinette
Frank Lyon ...
Ronnie
...
Elaine Koch ...
Jennie
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Storyline

A tour guide in Venice romances a visiting American tourist whose father owns a chewing-gum factory back in the U.S. She sets out to convince her skeptical father to bring the tour guide to America and give him a job in the plant.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Music | Romance

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Details

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Release Date:

3 May 1930 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gran charco  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(MovieTone)| (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Monkey Business (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

You Brought a New Kind of Love to Me
Written by Sammy Fain, Irving Kahal and Pierre Norman
Sung by Maurice Chevalier
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User Reviews

 
Dated and difficult to watch.
14 February 2017 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

"The Big Pond" is a rather archaic sort of movie...even compared to many other films from 1930. The sound is the major problem. Although it has a few musical numbers, the sound quality is pretty shabby on the copy I saw on YouTube. Could there be a better copy? Sure...but the film's problems aren't all because of the sound. The film itself seems as if the filmmakers weren't sure how to use the sound they had...and compared to the other musicals of the time it just seems flat and unappealing...which is amazing because Maurice Chevalier's films he made just after this were terrific.

The film begins with the Billings family in Europe on vacation. There, Barbara (Cluadette Colbert) falls in love with Pierre (Maurice Chevalier). The problem is that she comes from a rich family and Pierre is without a job. Her father agrees to bring Pierre to America and gives him a job in his chewing gum factory. While it might seem that the guy likes Pierre, he plans on giving Pierre a hard time--to work him so hard that he'll quit and the wedding plans will fall apart. However, Pierre manages to make good and become an important part of the family...and practically loses Barbara as a result.

Apart from having a chance to hear the same song made famous in the Marx Brothers film "Monkey Business" (where Groucho, Chico and Harpo try to use Chevalier's passport to disembark from the ship...and by singing "You Brought a New Kind of Love to Me" (from "The Big Pond"), there isn't a lot to distinguish the film. Chevalier is good in spite of everything and Colbert is, essentially, there but not particularly distinguished.

FYI--In the film, someone tells Pierre that a decent salary to obtain to enable you to get married is $20,000 a year. Back in 1930, the average salary was only about $1900 a year!


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