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C. Aubrey Smith
John owns the largest chain of five and ten cent stores in the country. He moves his family to New York from Kansas City and their life, though grand, is falling apart due to his constant working. Wife and mother Jenny is lonely. Son Avery hates his job. Daughter Jennifer is snubbed by classmate Muriel and her friends. At a charity bazaar, Jennifer meets Berry and sparks are evident. However, he is engaged to Muriel and Muriel will make sure that she, and only she, marries Berry. After the marriage, Berry still thinks of Jennifer as Jennifer thinks of Berry. Avery laments about the state of his family since they were happy in Kansas City. Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The Rarick family is what you would call new money. John Rarick inherited a small five and ten from his wife (Irene Rich) when they married and he used his business sense to expand on a national level. Now, the family lives in New York where the family tries to adjust to new social conditions. Mrs. Rarick is lonely and takes up with a gigolo. Jennifer (Marion Davies) does her best to get her foot into society. Avery (Douglass Montgomery) worried about the state of his family and dreads inheriting his father's company. Jennifer falls in love with a notable playboy (Leslie Howard) who is engaged to a snobby rich girl. However, he can't help but be charmed by Jennifer's wit and does his best to seduce her.
This is a pre-code film, and an incredibly sexy one at that. Sparks fly in Howard and Davies' scenes together. When he trickles his fingers across her bare arm, you can just feel the goosebumps rising. When her big blue eyes look into his, the tension is so strong. The two actors are amazing together and make for fantastic viewing in lieu of the average storyline. Montgomery is just as impressive in his secondary role. His lines are obviously scripted, but he reads them with a naturalness that is uncommon in these early movies. Robert Z. Leonard's direction is refreshing because he does not revert to a static camera, which was prevalent in early talkies. A noteworthy film and a must-see for Howard or Davies fans, Five and Ten deserves a DVD release.
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