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The Animal Kingdom (1932)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 28 December 1932 (USA)
Tom Collier has had a great relationship with Daisy, but when he decides to marry, it is not Daisy whom he asks, it is Cecelia. After the marriage, Tom is bored with the social scene and ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(screenplay), (play)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Thomas 'Tom' Collier
...
Cecelia Henry Collier
...
'Red' Regan - the majordomo
...
Owen Fiske
...
Grace
...
Mr. Rufus Collier
...
Franc Schmidt
Don Dillaway ...
Joe Fiske
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Storyline

Tom Collier has had a great relationship with Daisy, but when he decides to marry, it is not Daisy whom he asks, it is Cecelia. After the marriage, Tom is bored with the social scene and the obligations of his life. He publishes books that will sell, not books that he wants to write. Even worse, he has his old friend working as a butler and Cecelia wants him fired. When Tom tries to get back together with Daisy to renew the feelings that he once felt, Daisy turns the tables on him and leaves to protect both of them. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 December 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Królestwo zwierzat  »

Box Office

Budget:

$458,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to a Film Daily pre-production news item, screenwriter Horace Jackson was to assist in the casting of the film. See more »

Goofs

When Tom moves to the mantle with his father's check at the end of the film, a light suddenly comes on to more brightly illuminate that area of the room. See more »

Quotes

Daisy Sage: You're a free man you know, Tommy, always have been with me, no questions asked, but oh, please, Mexico in June, together, because listen... No, don't look at me. Look in the other way.
[Takes a deep breath]
Daisy Sage: On the boat coming over, the sweetest small boy, about two, and I got crazy about him and I want one. I want one *badly*. So would you please be good enough to marry me?
Tom Collier: [Is startled and stands straight up]
Daisy Sage: Oh, you always said you wanted to and I wouldn't let you. Well, it isn't terribly ...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Leslie Howard (1962) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good pre-code
10 April 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Leslie Howard, Ann Harding, and Myrna Loy are all members of "The Animal Kingdom" in this 1932 film based on the play by Phillip Barry. Barry in his way was a transitional playwright - he wrote about the upper class, usually negatively, but always gave a nod to the lower class - they were the ones that had more fun. Just a little bit later, plays about the upper class would go by the wayside for plays about the working class - Waiting for Lefty, Awake and Sing - as America moved through the depression.

Leslie Howard plays a member of said upper class who has engaged in a Bohemian lifestyle, living with an intelligent artist (Harding). They have a no attachment, open relationship, and he takes her at her word and gets himself engaged to a gorgeous, wealthy young woman (Myrna Loy) just as Harding decides she wants to settle down and have a family. She accepts his decision, but not his offer of continuing friendship.

There is a line about the "animal kingdom" in the film, but I prefer to think the title has to do with baser instincts. If Howard passionately desired Ann Harding, he wouldn't have wanted to be friends - and it's her desire of him that makes her reject his "just friends" suggestion. Let's face facts - Loy turns him on and knows it. In fact, she uses sex as a manipulative weapon, and he's putty in her hands. It's more blatant in this film than, say, "Harriet Craig" which was done under the code - but the power of sex is there.

Of course, a relationship based on sexual desire and nothing else eventually grows tired, and Howard finds himself going back to talk with Harding and spend time with her. She smartly keeps running. Clearly, Howard is a man who wants to have his cake and eat it, too.

Harding was an interesting leading woman - she was attractive but not beautiful and had a very low, distinctive speaking voice. She came from the Broadway stage, and her heyday in films was through the mid-thirties, though she worked consistently in films and television until the mid-60s. As was the case back then, at 31 years of age, her time as a leading lady was drawing to a close, and soon would be turned over to people like the younger Loy. Her performance in "The Animal Kingdom" is a very honest one. Loy is absolutely ravishing and wears beautiful clothes. She essays the part of the glamorous wife beautifully, reminiscent of Gene Tierney later on with the ultra-feminine facade hiding the steel underneath. Howard is handsome and thoughtful in the lead, and one can see it slowly occurring to him that he made a mistake.

Very good.


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