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William A. Wellman
George K. Arthur,
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Glamorous fluff...Edna May Oliver is the only reason for staying with it...
MGM gloss is evident in every Joan Crawford close-up. As a matter of fact, it's evident in the loving way Robert Montgomery and Franchot Tone have also been given handsome close-ups. But the big scene-stealer here is the lady who gets the best lines and the least flattering close-ups: Edna May Oliver.
As a silver-haired dowager who enjoys putting stuffy society swells in their place with a tart remark, she's a welcome presence in a film with a plot so ordinary that it was hardly worth bothering about. You can sit through the whole film admiring the costumes Joan Crawford wears with her special flair for looking like a well-dressed mannequin, her marble face with those high cheekbones and huge eyes assuring us that she is the STAR of this tiresome nonsense, but your eyes will stray to Edna May whenever she takes hold of a scene. Thankfully, that's pretty often.
When a baby-talking house guest calls someone "Peggy Weggy" she turns to Oliver who is supposed to introduce herself as Crawford's aunt. Missing hardly a beat, Oliver quips: "Just call me Fanny Aunty".
Is this the same playwright who later wrote THE PHILADELPHIA STORY for Hepburn? The plot is simply boy loves girl, boy loses girl, boy loves girl in a nutshell. There are a few pleasant moments with Charlie Ruggles and Gail Patrick--and if you don't blink--Joan Fontaine makes a fleeting appearance with a pained expression on her face. Hardly an inspiring debut.
Typical of the kind of fluff that began harming careers back in the 1930s. You can afford to miss it, believe me.
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