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Westward Passage (1932)

Passed  -  Drama  -  27 May 1932 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.8/10 from 147 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 1 critic

A struggling writer divorces his wife to pursue his career without interference, but they meet in Europe years later after she has remarried.



(story), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Title: Westward Passage (1932)

Westward Passage (1932) on IMDb 5.8/10

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Complete credited cast:
Ann Harding ...
Nicholas 'Nick' Allen
Irving Pichel ...
Juliette Compton ...
Heniretta, Olivia's Cousin
Emmett King ...
Mr. Henry P. Ottendorf
Florence Roberts ...
Mrs. Ottendorf
Lady Caverly
Don Alvarado ...
Count Felipe DeLatorie
Florence Lake ...
Elmer's Wife
Edgar Kennedy ...
Herman Bing ...
Otto Hoopengarner, the Dutchman
Irene Purcell ...
Baroness Diane von Stael


Struggling writer Nick Allen and socialite Olivia Van Tyne marry and live frugally because Nick refuses to compromise his writing to satisfy his publisher. However, when they have an unwanted child, he does become a "hack" writer to feed the baby, little Olivia, and he resents it. Three years later, little Olivia interferes too much in his work, so he finds his own apartment and eventually divorces Olivia, who then marries gentle and kindly Harry Ottendorf. Not seeing each other for six more years, Olivia and Nick accidentally meet in Lucerne, Switzerland, while she, Harry and little Olivia are on vacation, and Nick, now a famous author, is on tour promoting his new book. When Harry has to go back to the States on business, Nick tries to rekindle Olivia's flickering love, but she repels him. Later, Olivia finds that Nick has also booked a room on the ship going home so they can take the westward passage together. Olivia is torn between her loyalty to Harry and her burgeoning love for ... Written by Arthur Hausner <>

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Release Date:

27 May 1932 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Westward Passage  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


My Wonderful One
Music by Paul Whiteman and Ferde Grofé Sr.
Played as part of the score
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User Reviews

yak yak snooze, but with Harding and Olivier
18 June 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

No one can deny that Ann Harding was something to look at, and that is about all this film has to offer. Her co-star is a very young mustachioed Laurence Olivier working very hard to make something of an unconvincingly written character -specifically, a high-strung novelist who resents churning out hack material for quick money to pay the bills while living in a small apartment with his wife (Harding) and a baby daughter. Eventually he can take no more, divorces his wife and goes off to write what he pleases in peace, leaving his wife to marry a long-time admirer (Irving Pichel) who provides her with money and status even though she is not in love with him. Years later the estranged couple meets again in Lucerne. By now he is a successful and famous novelist and impulsively decides to wrest back the woman he had deserted. Throughout the proceedings they bicker and make up with tiring frequency. The movie is mostly talk in the Noel Coward style but without the Coward sparkle. The fights and reconciliations, including the reuniting of a divorced couple at a classy resort, are very reminiscent of Coward's "Private Lives" which had been filmed with disastrous results the year before. As in "Lives," the couple even plays and sings a song from time to time, in this case "What'll I Do?" In short, this is good if you like watching Harding, a great screen beauty, and examining the meticulous craftsmanship of Olivier. Otherwise it's a leaden and witless talkathon.

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