6.7/10
131
9 user 6 critic

Doubting Thomas (1935)

A husband makes fun of his wife's theatrical aspirations when she agrees to appear in a local production. When she begins to neglect him, he decides to retaliate by also going on stage.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Thomas Brown
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Paula Brown
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Mrs. Pampinelli
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Mr. Spindler
Andrew Tombes ...
Huxley Hossefrosse
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Florence McCrickett
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Peggy Burns
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Jimmy Brown
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Ralph Twiller
Helen Flint ...
Nelly Fell
Fred Wallace ...
Teddy
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LaMaze
Ruth Warren ...
Jenny
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Von Blitzen
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Stagehand
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Storyline

A husband makes fun of his wife's theatrical aspirations when she agrees to appear in a local production. When she begins to neglect him, he decides to retaliate by also going on stage.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

10 July 1935 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Will Roger's final film. Actually, it was released after his death, being in post-production at the time. See more »

Quotes

Paula Brown: My dear, you have to be an very good actress to be a successful wife.
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Connections

Referenced in The X-Files: Three Words (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Show Must Go On
31 December 2010 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Small-town "Brown Breakfast Sausage" manufacturer Will Rogers (as Thomas Brown) maneuvers to prevent fluttery wife Billie Burke (as Paula) from taking a role in a local play, fearing she may pursue a career as an actress. To make matters worse, their son Frank Albertson (as Jimmy) may lose pretty fiancée Frances Grant (as Peggy Burns) to the footlights. Like his dad, Mr. Albertson wants to marry a housewife. Under the direction of portly and pompous Alison Skipworth (as Mrs. Pampinelli), both women get parts in the town play - along with several other Hollywood hopefuls. Their dramatic efforts to get "discovered" by a visiting talent scout turn to comedy, but Mr. Rogers may get the last laugh…

"Doubting Thomas" was the film playing in theaters when its star's plane crashed. Thus, Will Rogers joined the list of media celebrities who died suddenly, and with obviously much more to contribute. His popularity can best be described as a combination of John Wayne and Oprah Winfrey; relative to the times, he may have been bigger. Rogers' final films were thankfully past the "creaky" transition from silent to sound, but the best of them have core ideals that are unacceptable. In this case, the message "a woman's place is in the house" is hammered home. Not a bad place to be, but everyone should be allowed to consider a career. Fortunately, Ms. Burke and the other women in the cast opted to entertain.

Other than that, the film is excellent. As always, Rogers is a natural; while presently not acknowledged as a great actor, his performance could have been envied by Spencer Tracy. Burke looks like she's influencing Betty White. All of the supporting cast is wonderful. Repeating her stage role expertly, Ms. Skipworth is worthy of a "Best Supporting Actress" award. You'll want to rewind after seeing Ms. Grant's fantastic dance; she moves her body with incredible fluidity. And, don't miss the very, very young William "Billy" Benedict as a golf caddy. The entire "production" staged by director David Butler for "director" Skipworth is hilarious, with sound-effects man Sterling Holloway (as Spindler) leading the charge.

******* Doubting Thomas (7/10/35) David Butler ~ Will Rogers, Billie Burke, Alison Skipworth, Sterling Holloway


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