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Robert Z. Leonard
J. Farrell MacDonald
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A chorus girl gets bad advice from her fellow chorines in handling a rich suitor who assumes she is a gold-digger. But she assumes he is after "one thing" and is holding out for marriage. After meeting his mother, she learns that her beau is engaged to a society girl. He loses his money and they drift apart. But after making a new fortune, he comes to the theater. Written by
A rich young man woos THE FLORODORA GIRL of his dreams -- but is he sincere?
For nearly 20 years, no other actress in America was the recipient of so much effort to make her a big movie star than Marion Davies. As mistress of the powerful media mogul, William Randolph Hearst, Davies appeared in one lavish film production after another. Hearst's seemingly bottomless pockets spared no expense and Marion lived like a queen both on screen and off. (Their huge California mansion, now called Hearst Castle, crowned a coastal estate of unstinted extravagance, while the saltwater sequence for FLORODORA GIRL was filmed in the waters in front of the enormous Santa Monica beach house Hearst built for her.)
Never one to put on airs, Davies won the hearts of her fans and the other Hollywood stars with her warm generosity and good spirits. On the screen Hearst preferred seeing her in heavy historical romances, but she much more enjoyed light comedy fare which better displayed her talents. Which is exactly what she does in FLORODORA GIRL, getting to sing & dance a little, playing a member of the famed sextet, looking for love with the right boy but not willing to compromise her morals in the search. Davies had been a Ziegfeld Follies Girl before being carried off by Hearst; the film poses a few questions about love and success which must have given Marion something to ponder.
Lawrence Gray, an important MGM musical comedy star at the beginning of the Sound Era, does well in his role as the vivacious society boy who learns a few things about maturity while wooing Davies. He had partnered with Marion before, in Silent & Sound pictures, and they have a good on-screen chemistry.
The supporting cast provide a few laughs: Walter Catlett, Louis John Bartels & Claud Allister as well-heeled stage door Johnnies; Ilka Chase & Vivian Oakland as aging, tough-as-nails Florodora Girls; Jed Prouty as Marion's alcoholic father; and George Chandler as her big-toothed cigar store boyfriend. That's Anita Louise who shows up very briefly as one of Gray's younger sisters.
MGM gave the film a nice feeling of the 1890's with its horseless carriages, puffed sleeve fashions and frequent songs. The early Technicolor with which the film closes is most pleasing to the eye.
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