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The Secret of Madame Blanche (1933)

Passed  |   |  Drama, History, Romance  |  3 February 1933 (USA)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 178 users  
Reviews: 9 user

Showgirl Sally meets young playboy Leonard St. John; they fall in love and are secretly married. When Leonard's father discovers this he sets out to break them apart, and following a bitter... See full summary »

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(screen play), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Secret of Madame Blanche (1933)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Aubrey St. John
Phillips Holmes ...
Leonard St. John
Una Merkel ...
Ella
Douglas Walton ...
Leonard Junior
C. Henry Gordon ...
State's Attorney
...
Eloise
Mitchell Lewis ...
Duval
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Undetermined Secondary Role (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

Showgirl Sally meets young playboy Leonard St. John; they fall in love and are secretly married. When Leonard's father discovers this he sets out to break them apart, and following a bitter row, Leonard kills himself, leaving Sally to pick up the pieces of her life. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 February 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Lady  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The play originally opened in New York City, New York, USA on 4 December 1923 and ran for 85 performances. See more »

Connections

References Madame X (1929) See more »

Soundtracks

If Love Were All
(1924) (uncredited)
Music by William Axt
Lyrics by Martha Lois Wells
Sung by Irene Dunne in a show
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Yet Another Self-Sacrificing Mother
7 December 2007 | by (Alexandria, VA) – See all my reviews

Innocent woman meets rich playboy. Innocent woman is seduced by rich playboy. Innocent woman is abandoned by rich playboy. Innocent woman has rich playboy's child. Innocent woman loses rich playboy's child. No-longer-innocent woman ages and prepares to sacrifice all for her child.

An entire genre of motion pictures, which often feature Barbara Stanwyck or Lana Turner, has used this basic plot to wring tears from largely female audiences. In "The Secret of Madame Blanche," Irene Dunne takes a turn at this well-worn routine and maintains her dignity throughout, despite the script's attempts to drown her in clichés. In the role of showgirl, Sally Sanders, Dunne has a few opportunities to show off her fine voice, but the musical selections are poor. The relatively short film, which was adapted from a play, lurches forward from hackneyed scene to hackneyed scene and leaves chasms of time for the audience to fill in. Occasionally, patient viewers will be rewarded with dialog and delivery so rich in camp that they will howl helplessly with unintended laughter, although a mouth-to-mouth kiss between mother and son, perhaps common for the period, induces cringes today. While Lionel Atwill is effective as Aubrey St. John, the selfish controlling father, and Philips Holmes is appropriately weak as his son, the rich playboy, the film offers little beyond the incomparable Irene Dunne slumming in a sub-par vehicle. Coincidences abound, French accents come and go, laws benefit the rich and oppress the poor, and a mother's self-sacrificing love conquers all. What more could one ask for? Perhaps Barbara Stanwyck and "Stella Dallas?"


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