6.2/10
150
10 user 2 critic

The Common Law (1931)

Passed | | Romance, Drama | 24 July 1931 (USA)
Young Valerie models for an American painter who tries to make a future in Paris and they fall in love.

Director:

Writers:

(adapted from his novel by), (screen story) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A young woman from a very rich family impulsively marries a reporter, but each assumes the other is the one whose lifestyle must change.

Director: Frank Capra
Stars: Jean Harlow, Loretta Young, Robert Williams
Devotion (1931)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The poor, downtrodden (beautiful, of course) "dutiful" daughter in a London society family falls for a barrister, disguises herself, and takes a job as governess to his son. Adapted from ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Milton
Stars: Ann Harding, Leslie Howard, Robert Williams
Bought! (1931)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Director: Archie Mayo
Stars: Constance Bennett, Ben Lyon, Richard Bennett
Rockabye (1932)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Actress Judy Carroll, from the gas-house district has been trained, educated and developed so well by her manager, that not even the publicity-seeking world of the theater has guessed her ... See full summary »

Directors: George Cukor, George Fitzmaurice
Stars: Constance Bennett, Joel McCrea, Paul Lukas
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Hard-hitting news editor Jim Branch falls for high-society type Sharon Norwood but can't get to first base as he continually makes use of her knowledge of the rich and famous to try to ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Constance Bennett, Clark Gable, Stuart Erwin
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A wealthy, proper society girl finds that she's much more popular with men when she pretends to be a "bad" girl.

Director: Edward H. Griffith
Stars: Constance Bennett, Ben Lyon, David Manners
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Larry Poole, in prison on a false charge, promise an inmate that when he gets out he will look up and help out a family. The family turns out to be a young girl, Patsy Smith, and her ... See full summary »

Director: Norman Z. McLeod
Stars: Bing Crosby, Madge Evans, Edith Fellows
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Police Chief Jim Fitzpatrick ruthlessly goes after organized crime and is prepared to use brutal and violent methods to fight it.

Director: Charles Brabin
Stars: Walter Huston, Jean Harlow, Wallace Ford
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Lil works for the Legendre Company and causes Bill to divorce Irene and marry her. She has an affair with businessman Gaerste and uses him to force society to pay attention to her. She has ... See full summary »

Director: Jack Conway
Stars: Jean Harlow, Chester Morris, Lewis Stone
Born to Love (1931)
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A war officer who is thought dead returns to the woman he loves, only to find she has remarried.

Director: Paul L. Stein
Stars: Constance Bennett, Joel McCrea, Paul Cavanagh
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Dowdy Sylvia accepts her boss' marriage proposal, even though he only asked her to avoid marriage to another woman. As a wealthy wife, Sylvia changes from ugly duckling to uninhibited swan ... See full summary »

Director: Paul L. Stein
Stars: Constance Bennett, Kenneth MacKenna, Basil Rathbone
Rebound (1931)
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Director: Edward H. Griffith
Stars: Ina Claire, Robert Ames, Myrna Loy
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Lew Cody ...
Dick Carmedon
Robert Williams ...
Sam
...
Mrs. Claire Collis
Marion Shilling ...
Stephanie Brown
Walter Walker ...
John Neville Sr.
Paul Ellis ...
Querido
...
Fifi
Edit

Storyline

Young Valerie models for an American painter who tries to make a future in Paris and they fall in love.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"I don't care what people say...as long as you say you love me!" (print ad)

Genres:

Romance | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 July 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agrafos nomos  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Quotes

John Neville Sr.: You're getting more like your mother every day.
Mrs. Claire Collis: I should think that would make you very happy.
John Neville Sr.: It does. And a little apprehensive.
See more »

Connections

Version of The Common Law (1923) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Attitude Easily Understood Today
20 March 2012 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The Common Law according to The Films Of Joel McCrea casts Joel for the very first time in white tie and tails, costuming he would get quite used to as his career progressed. Fortunately for him he would never get typecast in them the way Franchot Tone was.

This was also one of four films McCrea would do with Constance Bennett, a number that would qualify them as a screen team of sorts. The Common Law is one of those escapist dramas that Depression Era audiences just loved. This certainly showed a lifestyle that they dare not even dream about.

Joel is a rich young man who has gone to Paris to sow a few wild oats and play at being a Bohemian artist. While there he meets up with Constance Bennett another expatriate American who is living as kept mistress to Lew Cody, a really smarmy Frenchman. But she quarrels with Cody and hires out to McCrea as an artist's model. Naturally the two of them click.

But Joel's got a society sister in Hedda Hopper who is scandalized by such goings on. She'll break up McCrea and Bennett and save the family name and honor as she conceives it is.

The Common Law refers of course to marriage without benefit of clergy or at least civil sanction. This PreCode film while not condemning common law relationships does say women are better protected with a marriage license. An attitude easily understood today.

Robert Williams who later made such a hit in Frank Capra's Platinum Blonde has a supporting role as an perpetually inebriated playboy friend of McCrea's. His performance in this film confirms what a tragic loss he was to the big screen.

The Common Law is far more modern than a few films of today are even, definitely worth a look.


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Common Law (1931) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?