In September 1928, Warner Bros. Pictures purchased a majority interest in First National Pictures and from that point on, all "First National" productions were actually made under Warner Bros. control, even though the two companies continued to retain separate identities until the mid-1930's, after which time "A Warner Bros.-First National Picture" was often used. See more »
PARTY HUSBAND is a saucy pre-coder starring Dorothy Mackaill and James Rennie as a modern young couple who believe marriage should allow each to maintain his/her individuality and friends. At first everything goes well; they are happy together and each pursues a career. They continue to ignore warnings from her mother (Helen Ware) and close friend (Dorothy Peterson).
Then along comes a flirtatious writer (Mary Doran) who sets her sights on Rennie. Mackaill is warned again by her boss (Donald Cook) who once had an affair with Doran. As Doran moves in on Rennie, the marriage starts to falter. Can the young moderns salvage their marriage and love? Mackaill is excellent, looks great, and can zing the snappy comebacks with the best of them. Rennie is OK but seems (at 41) way too old for the part. Cook, Doran, and Peterson are all solid. Helen Ware gets a great scene toward the end of the film.
Others in the cast include Louise Beavers as the maid, Paul Porcasi as the artist, Joe Donahue as the best man, and Gilbert Emery as Holliday.
And there's a terrific scene on the night boat to Albany where Mackaill and Rennie have an argument and he walks out. She runs after him into the rainy night, but the boat has left the dock in Newburgh. She watches Rennie just standing there in the rain, lit my lamplight. We only see him from Mackaill's position on the boat. Beautifully done.
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