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Indiscreet (1931)

Passed | | Drama, Musical, Romance | 16 May 1931 (USA)
A young woman jeopardizes the relationship with the man she loves when a no-account from her past shows up.

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Writers:

(story "Obey That Impulse"), (story "Obey That Impulse") | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
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...
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Buster Collins
...
Aunt Kate
Henry Kolker ...
Mr. Woodward
...
Mrs. Woodward
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Storyline

On New Year's Eve, Geraldine ('Jerry') Trent decides to break up with her boyfriend Jim Woodward, having finally grown tired of his dishonesty and his infidelities. Soon afterward, Geraldine meets and falls in love with novelist Anthony Blake. Blake knows that she has had a man in her past, but he is content as long as he never finds out who it was. All seems well until her sister Joan returns from a trip, and happily introduces Woodward as the new man in her life. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Through one indiscretion--a woman with a future became a woman with a past


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

16 May 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Careless Heart  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the second scene of the film Gloria Swanson's character is reading "Obey That Impulse", the story on which Indiscreet is based. See more »

Quotes

Jim Woodward: Besides...I didn't think you noticed it.
Geraldine Trent: I tried not to--for some time.
Jim Woodward: Oh, ho--after all, my dear: a man must live!
Geraldine Trent: I've often wondered why it was necessary in some cases.
See more »


Soundtracks

Come to Me
(uncredited)
Music by Ray Henderson
Lyrics by Buddy G. DeSylva and Lew Brown
Performed by Gloria Swanson
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User Reviews

 
Swanson's charming persona lights up the screen
7 September 2005 | by See all my reviews

Although not a cinematic masterpiece, "Indiscreet" is a pleasant film in the vein of a P.G. Wodehouse farce with many charming moments. The dialogue is consistently sharp, often amusing, and is similar to the comedic repartee of later films by Preston Sturges, Billy Wilder, and Frank Capra. The plot revolves around a coquette, Geraldine Trent (Gloria Swanson), who finds the perfect man (Ben Lyon), only to be tempted by an old flame (Monroe Owsley). The choice she makes is easily predictable to connoisseurs of romantic comedy, but the plot of the film is of secondary importance due to the presence of Gloria Swanson.

Prior to viewing "Indiscreet," I had never seen Gloria Swanson in any other film aside from Billy Wilder's mesmerizing "Sunset Boulevard." To see Swanson in this film -- youthful, vivacious, and ravishing -- is to be in awe both of her beauty and her talent as an actress. A far cry from 'one-note' comediennes of the Silent Era, Swanson's range seems to be that of a modern performer: She imbues an otherwise shallow character with a layered, cheerful, and human personality. She is truly a forgotten and sparkling gem of early cinema.

The only downside of "Indiscreet" is Ben Lyon, cast as the love interest of Swanson's character. In contrast to Swanson's cinematic artistry, Ben Lyon is as flat, unromantic and devoid of charm as usual. Supposedly, Lyon was one of the most popular stars of Hollywood, but -- after seeing Lyon in several films -- I still fail to see justification for such laurels. Indeed, a cardinal sin of film is when the villain or rival beau is more charming and attractive than the so-called hero (Lyon). This film is guilty of that sin with Monroe Owsley, cast as the rival, being far more interesting than Lyon.

Despite the lackluster performance of Lyon and dated moments, "Indiscreet" is still a pleasant film and passes the time. Don't look for brilliance, but there is some entertainment to be gleaned. At the very least, watch "Indiscreet" to glimpse a young Gloria Swanson at the height of her feminine powers.


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