Fire chief Amos McCarthy, a confirmed misogynist, counsels his nephew Harry Howells to avoid matrimony at all costs. Still, the lovestruck Harry is determined to marry his sweetheart Ethel.... See full summary »
Carla de Hulvea is a rhumba dancer who makes news by posing as a South-American heiress. She is doing fine with her hoax until she meets American Peter Jackson, a high-pressure promoter who... See full summary »
A young girl goes to New York to find a band leader who has stolen all the songs she wrote and is passing them off as his own. She soon meets and falls in love with a struggling young songwriter who has his own problems.
Harry Shelby has been kept in knee pants for years by his overprotective parents, but the day finally comes when Harry is given his first pair of long pants. Almost immediately, he is ... See full summary »
A meek Belgian soldier (Harry Langdon) fighting in World War I receives penpal letters and a photo from "Mary Brown", an American girl he has never met. He becomes infatuated with her by ... See full summary »
A series of sketches with a shoe clerk, his wife, and his extra-curricular activities. The shoe clerk steps out on his wife with one of his customers. Both his wife and the woman's husband ... See full summary »
Low-life Harry falls in love with sweet Betty who inspires him to improve himself so he can marry her. He enters a $25,000 cross-country hiking contest. After many adventures he wins, pays ... See full summary »
The tune "Forever" which Ben Lyon plays on the piano and sings was later used for the Louis Jordan hit "Just a Gigolo". See more »
In the scene in the apartment of Lola Green, she plays a phonograph record on the Victor label but the label is the "scroll" design Victor only started using in 1925, even though the scene takes place in 1917. See more »
"A Soldier's Plaything" is living -- and talking -- proof that not every movie directed by Michael Curtiz was another "Casablanca" or "Yankee Doodle Dandy." Even by 1930s standards, it's a pot-boiler that appears -- from a barrage of title cards -- to have been planned as a silent, then revamped after "The Jazz Singer" opened. Ben Lyon gives a cardboard performance as a gambler who joins the army to escape a murder rap, Harry Langdon does better as his klutzy stooge, Noah Beery is the apoplectic officer who keeps putting them in the stockade. There are a few sight gags that may have been mildly amusing in 1930 and the sound is surprisingly sharp for the era. Otherwise, though, it's a museum piece.
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