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Spring Tonic (1935) More at IMDbPro »


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Frank Griffin (comedy sequences)
H.W. Hanemann
Release Date:
27 June 1935 (USA) See more »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Leaves no bitter taste! See more (1 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Lew Ayres ... Caleb Enix

Claire Trevor ... Bertha 'Betty' Ingals
Walter Woolf King ... José

Jack Haley ... Sykes

Zasu Pitts ... Maggie Conklin

Tala Birell ... Lola
Sig Ruman ... Matt Conklin
Frank Mitchell ... Griffin Nasher
Jack Durant ... Cambridge Nasher
Herbert Mundin ... Thompson - the Butler
Henry Kolker ... Mr. Enix
Laura Treadwell ... Mrs. Enix
Douglas Wood ... Mr. Ingalls
Helen Freeman ... Mrs. Ingalls
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Lynn Bari ... Bridesmaid

Walter Brennan ... Bum (uncredited)
Eddy Chandler ... Policeman (uncredited)
George Chandler ... Taxi Driver (uncredited)
Edgar Dearing ... Motorcycle Cop (uncredited)
Jay Eaton ... Wedding Guest (uncredited)
Wilfred Hari ... Japanese Chef (uncredited)
Arthur Housman ... Drunk (uncredited)
Lew Kelly ... Bum (uncredited)
Edgar Sherrod ... Clergyman (uncredited)

Directed by
Clyde Bruckman 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Frank Griffin  comedy sequences
H.W. Hanemann 
Ben Hecht  play
Charles MacArthur  play
Patterson McNutt 
Howard Irving Young  adaptation

Produced by
Robert Kane .... producer
Original Music by
Peter Brunelli (uncredited)
David Buttolph (uncredited)
Arthur Lange (uncredited)
Cinematography by
L. William O'Connell 
Costume Design by
René Hubert 
Camera and Electrical Department
John Schmitz .... camera operator (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
Arthur Lange .... musical director

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

58 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Did You Know?

Tonight There's a Spell on the MoonSee more »


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Leaves no bitter taste!, 28 March 2002
Author: tashman from Los Angeles

Clyde Bruckman did this one, and W.C. Fields' THE MAN ON THE FLYING TRAPEZE in 1935. Fast moving, at times downright wacky, this zippy farce is almost too zippy and too much of a farce, but who cares? It never stops moving, which is SPRING TONIC's saving grace. The cast is engaging, and filled to the brim with some familiar (and welcome) names -- ZaSu Pitts, Walter Brennan, Lew Kelly, Sig Ruman, Henry Kolker, Arthur Housman, George Chandler, and Herbert Mundin among them. If you've been annoyed by the endless physical schtick of Mitchell & Durant, rest assured they are quite funny and well-utilized here. It is also fun to watch Walter Woolf King lampoon a guitar-serenading Latin "lover" type. Tala Birell is a riot as a subtle, dominatrix-style Lion Tamer, but the bulk of the action is centered around leading lady Claire Trevor, who alternates between a frantic frustration and a manic desire to keep the proceedings racing along. Different from other 1930s leads, Trevor's more like the later Anne Baxter -- a character actress strapping on her screwball heroine hat. Perhaps this is why SPRING TONIC is so entertaining, for no matter what is hurled her way (and everything is), Trevor never misses, and keeping the pace is that stalwart leading schlepp, Jack Haley, a consistently engaging spirit seen to advantage in this highly typical 1930s role, chock full o' his trademark cowardly heroics. Driving back in at about the midway point is leading man Lew Ayers, one of the more inconsistent film stars of that era, for in SPRING TONIC, he ain't so good, but he's not so bad, either. He shows up, he's accused of being stodgy, and he loosens up a bit. I've seen him handle similar assignments with much more verve and commitment (MURDER WITH PICTURES), but then again, I've also seen him far worse (IRON MAN). Ayers in no way hinders SPRING TONIC, but it really doesn't matter who was in it or how well they did, for most of the proceedings, and anything else not nailed firmly down to the rickety sets, was stolen from all by that American treasure, ZaSu Pitts. Suffice to say that there is one brief sequence that only involves Pitts and a small shelving unit - I've never seen anything quite so funny as that.

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