The West Indies island of Portuga exists mainly for sponge diving. But the best area of collection is frequented by a very large manta ray. Nina loses her lover to the creature and is ... See full summary »
The offices of a great newspaper syndicate are presided over by John B. Radway, obviously a nut, and his sister Ollie Radway, obviously the brains in the family. David "Party" Partridge, ... See full summary »
Three stories about the pleasure. The first one is about a man hiding his age behind a mask to keep going to balls and fancying women - pleasure and youth. Then comes the long tale of Mme ... See full summary »
Dr "Peggy" Simmons, a successful and respected plastic surgeon, encounters job stress beyond her control. Lacking a social side to her harried life and desperately seeking romance, she ... See full summary »
Lou Ricarno is a smart guy. His plan is to organize the various gangs in Chicago so that the mugs will not liquidate each other. WIth the success of his leadership, Louie prospers, marries ... See full summary »
Oliver Lane is "The Solitaire Man," a renowned jewel thief who is ready to retire and marry Helen, his partner in crime and his one true love. Their plans are shattered when another member ... See full summary »
A family of blue-bloods made destitute by the depression are scammed into leasing out their yacht and posing as crew to tacky "new money", one of whom is their former cook. The scam turns out to be a plot by the gruff captain (Ned Sparks, the Walter Matthau of his day) to shipwreck them on a desert island run by a madcap queen (Mary Boland) and escape with their money. Of course, things go afoul has the queen as plans of her own.
Such is the basic plot of this pre-code comedy with a few musical numbers thrown in for good measure. It was the era of Astaire and Rogers at RKO, and in their other musicals, RKO attempted to give them the gloss of the popular dance team. This relatively short film (just over an hour) was a major disaster in its day according to "The Hollywood Musical", but seen today, it is fairly fun, campy, and a passable time-filler. There is nothing remarkable in the songs or numbers (except one production number, "South Sea Bolero"), and the romantic leads (Sidney Fox and Sidney Blackmer) are uninteresting. The character parts, however, add humor, especially Spark's grumpy ship's captain, Boland's dizzy queen, and Polly Moran's butch cruise director. Throw in Sterling Holloway (the voice of Winnie the Pooh), and you have enough humor to make this an adequate second feature.
The comic moments (most notably Holloway's rigging of a roulette table) are enjoyable, but there is a somewhat disturbing portrayal of South Sea Islanders as lazy folks who do nothing but make love all day. There was plenty of eye-raising and "I can't believe they said that!" among my friends whom I watched this with, but just another example of what Hollywood "used" to be like. I view it as an interesting idea with tacky elements thrown in that make this film a product of its times.
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