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Our Betters (1933)

Passed  -  Comedy | Drama | Romance  -  17 March 1933 (USA)
6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 324 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 4 critic

Although the British upper class may be thought our betters in society, but they are certainly not our betters, and perhaps our equals, in morality.

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(play), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Lady Pearl Grayston
Violet Kemble Cooper ...
Duchess (as Violet Kemble-Cooper)
Phoebe Foster ...
Princess
...
Thornton Clay
Charles Starrett ...
...
Bessie
...
Pepi D'Costa
Minor Watson ...
Arthur Fenwick
Hugh Sinclair ...
Lord Bleane
...
Lord George Grayston
Harold Entwistle ...
Pole
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Virginia Howell ...
Mrs. Saunders (scenes deleted)
Walter Walker ...
Mr. Saunders (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

American heiress Pearl Saunders marries Lord George Grayston but later sees him embracing his lover on their wedding day. She has his title and he has her money; thereafter they are rarely seen together. Pearl is accepted by the British aristocracy and is presented at court, but creates a scandal by wearing black. She encourages her younger sister, Bessie, who idolizes her, to respond to the attentions of Lord Harry Bleane despite Bessie preferring American Fleming Harvey. Pearl gives a weekend party at the Grayston estate inviting close friends, including her lover, Arthur Fenwick; her friend, Duchess Minnie and Minnie's gigolo companion, Pepi D'Costa; as well as Bessie, Lord Bleane and Harvey. Pepi, who had been meeting Pearl on the sly, discretely suggests a rendezvous with her in the new teahouse on the property. Both make some pretext to leave but are seen by Minnie entering the teahouse. Vindictive Minnie pretends to have left her purse in the teahouse and sends Bessie to fetch ... Written by Arthur Hausner <genart@volcano.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

wedding | sister | party | heiress | gigolo | See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 March 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Haute société  »

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

The play opened on Broadway in New York City, New York, USA on 12 March 1917 and closed in June 1917 after 112 performances. It was revived on 20 February 1928 with Ina Claire as Pearl, Constance Collier as the Duchess, Reginald Bach (who also directed) as Thornton Clay, and with Lillian Kemble-Cooper and Madge Evans. The revival ran for 128 performances and closed in June 1928. See more »

Quotes

Princess Flora dela Chicora: It's wonderful how you've made your way, Pearl.
Lady Pearl Saunders Grayston: Shall I tell you how I've done it? By force of character, wit, unscrupulousness and push.
Princess Flora dela Chicora: You're very frank.
Lady Pearl Saunders Grayston: That's always been my pose.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Celluloid Closet (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

God Save the Queen!
(1744) (uncredited)
Music attributed to Henry Carey
Played at the end of the royal court scenes
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Hilarious, mordant send-up of expatriate social climbers
28 March 1999 | by (Hollywood) – See all my reviews

Must confess I scored it a Ten to raise the average. By all rights this one should rate an average of 8-9.

The bad prints and dated stage business cannot diminish the ethereal beauty of Constance Bennett and Anita Louise, the biting satire of Somerset Maugham, and an over-the-top pas de deux finalé between a lecherous duchess and a "dancing queen" that embellishes one of the most comically smashing dénouements in film history.


7 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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