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If You Could Only Cook (1935)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  30 December 1935 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 721 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 10 critic

An executive lets an attractive cook talk him into taking a job as butler.

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Writers:

(screen play), (screen play), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Herbert Marshall ...
...
Joan Hawthorne
Leo Carrillo ...
Mike Rossini
...
Alan Edwards ...
Bob Reynolds
Frieda Inescort ...
Evelyn Fletcher
Gene Morgan ...
Al
Ralf Harolde ...
Swig
Matt McHugh ...
Pete
Richard Powell ...
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Storyline

Auto magnate James Buchanan has a fiancée who doesn't love him and a board of directors who won't listen to him. Brooding on a park bench, he meets unemployed Joan Hawthorne, a fine cook who needs a partner to apply for a 'couple' butler/cook job with gourmet ex-bootlegger Mike Rossini. Bemused, Buchanan goes along with the gag, taking lessons from his own butler. But there's sure to be a day of reckoning... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

SHE GAVE UP HER PARK BENCH FOR HIM! HE GAVE UP MILLIONS FOR HER! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 December 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Búsquenme una novia  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In order to cash in on Frank Capra's popularity in England, Columbia Pictures released this film in London as "A Frank Capra Production, produced by Frank Capra." Capra who had never even seen the film was furious. This led to a bitter year-long dispute between the head of Columbia Harry Cohn, and Capra (who sued Columbia for libel). It almost cost Cohn his job and almost resulted in Capra leaving the studio. It was resolved when Cohn relented and promised to buy for Capra, the rights to the play "You Can't Take It with You" for $200,000, and pay him some back salary if he would drop the suit. And Capra did. See more »

Quotes

Evelyn Fletcher: [soon to be bride instructing her groom on the ceremony] And then you just keep saying I do.
Roy - Pianist at Wedding Rehearsal: Until you're done!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Lady with the Torch (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
Played on piano by Walter Byron at the wedding rehearsal
Reprised by the band at the wedding
See more »

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User Reviews

Very satisfying romantic comedy
9 December 2004 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

This dry, low-key romantic comedy is very satisfying. Arthur is excellent, and Marshall is well cast as an automobile executive who wants to get away from his stuffy board of directors and his pushy fiancé, and finds happiness posing as a butler (initially so that Arthur can get work as part of a butler-cook team). Lionel Stander (as he often does) steals the show as the acerbic sidekick of gangster Carillo, and he's given some great lines. Carillo is pleasing, too, as the gangster who wants to live like the gentry, and who's romantically interested in Arthur, but who's willing to hold back because he's a gourmet and is even more interested in retaining her as a cook. The best thing about the film is that it never gets tripped up in excessive plot complications, or telegraphs its humor. Giving Carillo a gustatorial as well as romantic interest allows him to take certain actions without burdening the romance of the principals. And, after giving us enough of a glimpse of the snotty fiancé to know what Marshall's in for, the film has the grace not to show her face again; no silly "scheming" or tiresome bared claws. In the final scene, when all are trying to convince Arthur through a locked door that she should marry, they move from straight arguments to playing roles in a "routine," but there's no winking and signaling to signify a change in technique, it just flows quickly and naturally. The film has enough confidence in the unfolding of the relationship between the principals that the intrusion of other characters and mechanical "plot complications" can be kept to a minimum Thus Carillo's proposal and interference at the denouement serves mainly to allow Arthur to voice her feelings about Marshall, and Carillo actually brings them together rather than holding them apart. Nice film.


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