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André De Toth
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William A. Seiter
Blue collar steelworker Richard Brunton (McCrea) saves two of his fellow workers after an accident at a factory. In gratitude, his boss, millionaire Arthur Parker invites Richard for dinner with his family. Arthur's daughter Dot (Mackaill) is instantly impressed and infatuated with Richard She vows to marry him within a month.She does but Richard's seeming good luck is short-lived when he discovers how spoiled and selfish Dot really is, draining his finances dry in her greed, and he becomes Dot's "kept husband." Richard eventually convinces her to settle down and be happy on his humble salary. Written by
It has an interesting plot idea but fails to capitalize due to the writing.
This film begins with a rich guy announcing to his family that he's bringing home a worker from his factory. As his family is made up of spoiled rich folks, they assume this guy would be a bumpkin. However, Dick (Joel McCrea) turns out to be well-mannered, quite humble and an All-American football player! He doesn't tell them about the football--the boss' daughter, Dorothy (Dorothy Mackaill) recognizes him. And, although she sure seemed pretty snobby, now she suddenly is VERY interested in Dick (take that how you might) and later announces to her father that she is going to marry that working man. However, even if she does hook him, can it even work out? After all, they are as unlike as can be--he's a decent, hard-working man and she's just a seemingly vacuous rich girl.
Unfortunately, soon after the marriage, it becomes apparent that Dorothy feels that because she comes from money, she should make all the decisions in the marriage. And, for a while, Dick is emasculated (again, take that how you might). Eventually, however, he gets near the breaking point--he has a great opportunity and she wants him to give it up so he can stay home by her side. Soon, the marriage fizzles. Is there any hope for this couple?
All in all, the best way to describe Dorothy's behavior throughout the film is...well,...IMDb won't let me use language like this! She is too awful, as it makes you wonder how a guy like Dick could put up with her for ANY length of time. I wish her part have been a bit more subtle. Because of this, the film is severely impacted. Had she been likable and less one-dimensional, the film would have been significantly better. As for McCrea and his part, he was quite good and this sort of piffle didn't significantly mar his career. Overall, a decent idea for a film but it was in need of a significant re-write.
By the way, get a load of the Christmas tree (about 20 minutes into the film). It's pretty amazing. And, about three minutes later, watch the ridiculous acting of Dorothy's mother--it made me chuckle. Also, the current image on IMDb seems to imply that this is some sort of saucy Pre-Code film. Well, since it came out before mid-1934, of course it's Pre-Code--but it is NOT a sexy film nor one that would have violated the toughened Production Code. It looks like a case of false advertising.
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