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Ruggles of Red Gap (1935)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Romance | 8 March 1935 (USA)
An English valet brought to the American west assimilates into the American way of life.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Egbert Floud (as Charlie Ruggles)
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Prunella Judson (as ZaSu Pitts)
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Dell Henderson ...
Sam
Clarence Wilson ...
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Storyline

While visiting Paris in 1908, upper class Lord Burnstead loses his butler playing poker. Egbert and Effie Floud bring Ruggles back to Red Gap, Washington. Effie wants to take advantage of Ruggles' upper class background to influence Egbert's hick lifestyle. However, Egbert is more interested in partying and he takes Ruggles to the local 'beer bust'. When word gets out that "Colonel Ruggles is staying with his close friends" in the local paper, the butler becomes a town celebrity. After befriending Mrs. Judson, a widow who he impresses with his culinary skills, Ruggles decides to strike out on his own and open a restaurant. His transition from servant to independent man will depend on its success. Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

SH-H-H-H! TONIGHT'S YOUR NIGHT TO HOWL! And howl you will at this funniest of all comedies...

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

8 March 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Det begyndte i Paris  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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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

The Gettysburg address had great personal significance to Charles Laughton as he was considering taking up American citizenship. See more »

Goofs

When Effie tells Ruggles to take her husband to the art museums she shows him a book that he uses to record his impressions of the art he's viewed, when the camera angle changes the book has changed from her hands to her husbands hands without any pause in her lines. See more »

Quotes

Ruggles: I'm putting out your light grey, my Lord. There is something in the air this morning which calls for light grey, I think.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown over various silhouettes of a butler. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Gettysburg Address (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Cheyenne
(uncredited)
Music by Egbert Van Alstyne
Lyrics by Harry Williams
Sung by guests at Nell Kenner's place
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User Reviews

 
All's Right With the World
16 August 2002 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

Director Leo McCarey, in his heyday a famous director and rival of Frank Capra's, and now largely forgotten, made one of his best films, Ruggles Of Red Gap, adapted from Harry Leon Wilson's novel, in 1935. It tells the story of a meek English butler named Ruggles, who is "lost" in a poker game by his boss, an English earl. Living out west, in Washington state, he is gradually assimilated into American life, makes himself somewhat of a local celebrity, and falls in love along the way. That's about all there is to the story, and it's more than enough in director McCarey's capable hands.

As Ruggles, Charles Laughton is more restrained than he's ever been, and gives a fine comedic performance of rare delicacy. There's none of the usual hamming one expects of him. As his new "bosses", Egbert and Effie Floud, Charlie Ruggles and Mary Boland are wonderful as middle-aged denizens of the Pacific northwest. As Ruggles' girl, Prunella, Zasu Pitts is at her dithering best; while Roland Young is sly and stylish as the earl. The actors interact with exquisite timing, with no one missing a beat, as was nearly always the case with McCarey, who had a rare feeling for the way people actually behave,--as opposed to the way movie people do--which makes his films, when good, a special treat.

This movie is a classic, if a quiet one, and used to be far better known than it is today, which is a pity. Capra's films are shown all the time, while McCarey', aside from his two "Catholic" films of the mid-forties, Going My Way and Bells Of St. Mary's, tend by be neglected. There are no "big scenes" in this one, but an awful lot of brilliant little ones, as when Roland Young learns how to play the drums; or when Charle Laughton recites the Gettysburg Address, the latter the high point of the film, and its most famous moment. One can't help but think, after seeing this movie, that all's right with the world. It isn't, of course, and never has been, but it's awfully nice to feel that way without having to resort to drugs or alcohol. For that one can think Mr. McCarey.


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