A scheming promoter and his partner win a beauty contest after submitting a composite photo, convincing a chambermaid to help impersonate the fictional starlet; things go awry when a famed aviator falls in love with the picture.
Peg and her father live a simple life in an Irish fishing village. One day Sir Gerald arrives at the village to tell Pat that Peg is heir to estate of her grandfather, who hated Pat. The upshot of the will is that she must go to England for 3 years to learn to be a lady and that Pat can never see her again. Pat does not tell Peg about his part of the will and sends her to live with Mrs. Chichester for her education. Peg soon finds that Alaric needs to marry her, but she wants Gerald who is engaged to Ethyl who wants Brent whose wife will not divorce him. Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In order to gain a huge inheritance, young Margaret (her father's PEG O' MY HEART) leaves her fishing village in the West of Ireland to live with an impoverished, but insufferable, noble family in England.
This wonderful, heartwarming - although sadly neglected - film boasts a winning performance from the most misunderstood star of Hollywood's Golden Age. Marion Davies is delightfully playful and quite captivating, easily dominating her every scene. A natural mimic, Davies' Irish brogue is natural & lilting, adding a further dimension to her entrancing character. For viewers unfamiliar with her expertise, Davies will come as a welcome surprise.
In the supporting cast, J. Farrell MacDonald takes first honors as Davies' father; he is completely believable as a tenderhearted old fisherman who sorrowfully gives up his daughter for her own good. Onslow Stevens is well cast as the kind baronet who captures Peg's heart. Alan Mowbray, as a local cad, and Robert Greig, as a stuffy butler, both score in their roles. Tyrell Davis is very amusing as a giddy young gynandroid with absolutely no intentions of wooing Davies. Doris Lloyd as Mowbray's no-nonsense wife, and Nora Cecil as an elderly maid, shine in their cameo appearances.
MGM, under the watchful eye of William Randolph Hearst, gave PEG a splendid cinematic treatment, with money lavished most especially on the production values of the fishing village scenes. The movie proved to be a hit with audiences, as was its signature tune 'Sweetheart Darling,' by Nacio Herb Brown & Arthur Freed.
This was Hearst's favorite of all Davies' films. Although he realized it was time, at age 36, for her to no longer play 20-year-olds, he campaigned relentlessly that she be given an Academy Award nomination. (No MGM actresses were nominated that year, as it turns out; Katharine Hepburn over at RKO got the Oscar.)
Time has not dealt kindly with Marion Davies. Almost forgotten today, when remembered at all it is usually as a sort of footnote to history or object of scandal. Her life certainly was colorful, and as chatelaine of America's most amazing private estate she did circulate amidst powerful circles. But to remember her as the bimbo blonde mistress of the country's mightiest media baron is patently unfair.
While much of the blame can go to Orson Welles' spoof of Davies in CITIZEN KANE (which he was to admit he regretted towards the end of his life) it must be stated emphatically that Marion was not a no-talent actress with few friends & even fewer brains, whose career was destroyed by her stammer leaving her to spend lonely years in great, hulking empty castles.
In reality, Davies was a bright, vivacious lady who charmed & captivated such diverse guests as George Bernard Shaw & Winston Churchill throughout her 33-year liaison with Hearst. Adored by her friends, and a fierce cadre of fans, Davies was renowned for her tireless generosity and charitable good works. Her speech impediment never affected her screen acting and her undeniable talent was evident to any who were willing to access her performances honesty and look past the scandal.
Davies had to have been embarrassed by the Hearst empire's relentless pushing of her career. She knew this left her open to ridicule & mockery, doubtless contributing to her scarcely concealed alcoholism. But she eventually relinquished her film pursuits in order to care for the aging Hearst, and after his death in 1951 she showed herself to be an astute businesswoman during the remaining ten years of her life.
It is only now, with the passage of much time & the restoration of her old movies, that it is becoming easier to acknowledge the contributions & cinematic expertise of Marion Davies.
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