6.3/10
344
14 user 14 critic

Finishing School (1934)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 4 May 1934 (USA)
The trials and tribulations in a private, snobbish girls school.

Directors:

(as George Nicholls Jr.),

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Kit Madden is traveling to Hollywood, where her best-selling novel is to be filmed. Aboard the train, she encounters Marines Rusty and Dink, who don't know she is the author of the famous ... See full summary »

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Claudette Colbert, John Wayne, Don DeFore
Hue and Cry (1947)
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A gang of street boys foil a master crook who sends commands for robberies by cunningly altering a comic strip's wording each week, unknown to writer and printer. The first of the Ealing ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Crichton
Stars: Alastair Sim, Frederick Piper, Harry Fowler
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A story that focuses on the problematic relationship between Paul Marseul, owner of a prestigious vineyard in Saint Emilion and his son, Martin, who works with him on the family estate. ... See full summary »

Director: Gilles Legrand
Stars: Niels Arestrup, Lorànt Deutsch, Patrick Chesnais
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Documentary on the life and times of Ken Loach. His politics in British TV and Cinema and the chaos he has caused the establishment for 50 years.

Director: Louise Osmond
Stars: Ken Loach, Jim Allen, Lesley Ashton
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When Clementi Suborin is found murdered, his secretary recounts to the police the story of his rise from Czech refugee to ultra-rich New Yorker. The tale of betrayal, womanising and fraud ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Martin
Stars: George Sanders, Yvonne De Carlo, Zsa Zsa Gabor
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

After Larry Darrent accidentally kills his lover's blackmailing husband, someone else is arrested for the crime. When he is found guilty, Larry and Wanda have just three weeks together ... See full summary »

Director: Basil Dean
Stars: Vivien Leigh, Leslie Banks, Laurence Olivier
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A polo player's wife becomes the mystery woman in a Long Island horsy-set murder trial.

Director: Robert Florey
Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Gene Raymond, Genevieve Tobin
Upperworld (1934)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A rich railroad tycoon, bored with his marriage (his wife has no time for him -- she's too busy giving parties and sailing on yachts) starts seeing a showgirl. This are going OK until the ... See full summary »

Director: Roy Del Ruth
Stars: Warren William, Mary Astor, Ginger Rogers
Dark Hazard (1934)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Jim is a compulsive gambler. He meets Marge at a boarding house and they get married. His gambling causes problems. When he runs into old flame Valerie, Marge leaves him. After a few years ... See full summary »

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Genevieve Tobin, Glenda Farrell
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A ruthless fashion designer steps on everyone in her way in order to reach the top of her profession. Eventually she is forced to choose between her ambition and the man she loves.

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: Susan Hayward, Dan Dailey, George Sanders
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In this family saga, Mrs. Parkington recounts the story of her life, beginning as a hotel maid in frontier Nevada where she is swept off her feet by mine owner and financier Augustus ... See full summary »

Director: Tay Garnett
Stars: Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon, Edward Arnold
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

Lorna, the daughter of an American playboy, enters a girls' school for the international smart-set, in the Alps, where the main course of study appears to be how to trap a rich man. At ... See full summary »

Director: Bernard Vorhaus
Stars: Susan Stephen, Anna Maria Ferrero, Jacques Sernas
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
The Girl / Virginia Radcliff
...
Her Mother / Mrs. Helen Crawford Radcliff
...
Her Pal / Cecilia 'Pony' Ferris
...
The Boy / Ralph McFarland - intern
...
Her Father / Mr. Frank S. Radcliff
...
Her Teacher / Miss Van Alstyne
Sara Haden ...
Her Teacher / Miss Fisher
Helen Freeman ...
Dr. Hewitt
Marjorie Lytell ...
Ruth Wallace
Adalyn Doyle ...
Madeleine 'Maggy' Kelly
...
Billie (as Dawn O'Day)
Irene Franklin ...
Aunt Jessica - Pretender
Ann Cameron ...
Miss Schmidt
Rose Coghlan ...
Miss Edith Garland
Caroline Rankin ...
Miss Weber
Edit

Storyline

Virginia Radcliff, a remarkably unspoiled but naive rich-kid, finds herself at a swank girls' school where everything appears prim and proper, but the motto is essentially "Don't Get Caught." On a surreptitious field trip to the city (engineered by "Pony"), Virginia meets Ralph, a struggling lower/middle-class med student who delivers room service at a hotel at night. They fall in love, much to the outrage of the school's headmistress (Beulah Bondi) and the embarrassment of her otherwise indifferent mother. Written by Chris Holland <cholland@atlantic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 May 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Educande d'America  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Filmed partially on location at Jewett Estate, 1145 Arden Road, Pasadena, California. See more »

Quotes

Virginia: But if they have those rules, and we're on our honor, I...
Pony: Honor? You're supposed to do exactly as you please in this old ladies home for nice young gals. Just don't get caught, that's all.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Following the opening credits, a hand turns turns the cover of the prospectus for Crockett Hall which reveals "In accepting young ladies for enrollment as students at Crockett Hall, consideration is given only to those families of breeding and inheritance who naturally wish their daughters to be fitted for carrying on the highest social traditions.

Crockett Hall offers more than an education. It offers intimacy with the privileges and duties of social rank. It provides a high degree of protection from the less desirable associations. Crockett Hall has been the unquestioned choice of first families since its founding fifty years ago.

Fees are in keeping with the character of our service and patronage. The tuition is six thousand dollars a year plus incidental expenses to ............." See more »


Soundtracks

Virginia's Gonna Get Fried
(uncredited)
(Sung to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell")
Sung a cappella by Ginger Rogers and others
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Francis Dee Shines In A Drama With Something To Say
19 July 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The first indication that "Finishing School" is worth watching is that the Catholic church placed the film on its condemned list for 1934. But it has so much more than that to recommend it.

The star of the film is Francis Dee, who plays Virginia Radcliff, the teenage daughter of rich parents who send her off to get educated in the finer aspects of life. The mother--played by Billie Burke--seems to have little use for the daughter and is quite happy to "drop her on the doorstep" and retire to her social agenda.

Crockett Hall is an exclusive girls school where exclusivity implies a lack of racial diversity and an emphasis on blueblood backgrounds. At first the school seems like a backdrop for a film comedy about coming of age and the harmless hijinks of young women. But Virginia soon learns that Crockett is little more than a prison where the ridiculous rules of etiquette are but a small part of the personality engineering to which the girls are subjected.

Virginia forges quality relationships with a small clique, including "Pony" Ferris, played by Ginger Rogers. Being a fan of Ms. Rogers, I was pleased to find that by this time in her career she is a fully-formed, competent actress.

As the harsh headmistress, Miss Van Alstyne (played by Beulah Bondi), cracks down on the indiscretions of Virginia--especially the indiscretion of being "too different"--and we find that this teen comedy has morphed into a significant drama. Francis Dee is more than up to the challenge with her convincing portrayal of a woman who is fighting for her sanity and her life. Indeed, she raises Virginia to the level of heroine.

"Finishing School" is a stylish film with great acting. It deals with sophisticated issues and gives the viewer an emotional journey.


3 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Never Hit Your Grandma With a Shovel atlasmb
Tuition philpots-1
Will be on TCM 10/6/2015 at 3:15pm MovieGem
Discuss Finishing School (1934) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?