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Lieutenant Niki of the Austrian royal guard has a new girlfriend, Franzi. He's crazy about her and is smiling at her while on duty in the street. King Adolf and his daughter Princess Anna from the neighboring kingdom of Flausenthurm drive by, and Anna intercepts a wink meant for Franzi. She falls for Niki, marries him (he has no choice in the matter), and whisks him off to Flausenthurm. Franzi follows and enjoys a brief affair with Niki before Anna finds out. Franzi, much more experienced in the ways of the world, gives Anna lessons on how to win the affections of her husband. Written by
John Oswalt <email@example.com>
Once more, thanks to TCM, we get the chance of watching this wonderful, charming, early talkie by the master of sophisticated comedy and innuendo, Ernst Lubitsch.
This is an absolutely entertaining and absorbing tale of a carefree, debonair Viennese Lieutenant, who falls for a violin player, thus finding his perfect sexual counterpart, but because of circumstances, becoming married to a prudish, mousey, princess.
Chevalier is the perfect "Smiling Lieutenant" of the title, singing in great from with his heavy trademark, french-accent. Colbert, in an early stage of her career, looks very different from her definitive trademark "Look", she acquired afterwards.....but is equally carefree, joyous and flirtatious. Miriam Hopkins is excellent as the princess, who falls madly in love with Chevalier, and who will do anything to have him!!
Just as it happened with "Trouble in Paradise", I really hope that this gem, as well as "Design for Living", "Monte Carlo", "The Love Parade", "Love Me Tonight", "One Hour With You", will become available on DVD, in decent form, as they deserve, as primary examples, of the long gone Pre-Code Era!!!
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