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Desire (1936)

 -  Comedy | Romance | Crime  -  11 April 1936 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 1,142 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 8 critic

An automotive engineer bound for a holiday in Spain meets a sultry jewel thief.

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Title: Desire (1936)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Tom Bradley
...
Carlos Margoli
...
Mr. Gibson
Ernest Cossart ...
Aristide Duvalle
...
Avilia, Police Official
...
Dr. Maurice Pauquet (mistakenly listed in end credits as Dr. Edouard Pauquet)
Zeffie Tilbury ...
Aunt Olga
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
George MacQuarrie ...
Clerk With Gun (scenes deleted)
Robert Emmett O'Connor ...
Customs Official (scenes deleted)
Edit

Storyline

Madeleine steals a string of pearls in Paris and uses US engineer Tom, who is driving on his vacation to Spain, to get the pearls out of France, but getting the pearls, back from him proves to be difficult without falling in love. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

LOVE WAS HER PRECIOUS LOOT! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | Crime

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

11 April 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Pearl Necklace  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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

"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on December 1, 1940 with Marlene Dietrich reprising her film role. See more »

Quotes

Aristide Duvalle: Cigarette?
Madeleine de Beaupre: No, thank you, I don't smoke.
Aristide Duvalle: Nor do I. A barbaric habit. One fills one's lungs and other people's eyes with smoke.
See more »

Connections

Remake of Die schönen Tage von Aranjuez (1933) See more »

Soundtracks

Awake in a Dream
Music by Friedrich Hollaender (as Frederick Hollander)
Lyrics by Leo Robin
Played during the opening and end credits
Played on piano and sung by Marlene Dietrich
Played as background music often
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Lubitsch Touch Is Felt Again
27 August 2002 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

The DESIRE for a fabulous string of pearls has unexpected results for the beautiful thief.

Bearing the unmistakable impress of its legendary producer, Ernst Lubitsch, here is a stylish concoction of witty dialogue & sophisticated romance sure to please the most discriminating palate. It is a shame that the film is so badly neglected, as it is a joy from start to finish. With impeccable production values, the film is also a study in handsome sets & costumes.

Gorgeous Marlene Dietrich ravishes the eye with her sheer physical presence, but her beauty should not detract from her acting ability, which is considerable. She presents us with a woman of mystery & slowly, deliberately, allows us to acquaint ourselves with her character. She imbues it all with a real sense of humor, which makes her first scenes, in which she pulls off a classic jewel robbery, all that more delightful.

Rawboned & enthusiastic, there is very little mystery swirling about Gary Cooper, playing an American auto engineer working in Paris. Embracing all life might bring him in his first trip to Spain, he is wide open and ready for passionate romance when Dietrich blows into his life. Their screen time together is charged with sensual electricity which no Production Code could disguise.

Deftly underplaying the menace of his role, John Halliday is dangerously suave as a thieving ‘prince' who manages to keep one step ahead of the law. Ernest Cossart & Alan Mowbray are wonderful as Parisian gentlemen who fall victim to Dietrich's schemes (one has his pearls purloined, the other gets his dignity damaged).

Elderly English actress Zeffie Tilbury is given an unusually choice role, playing the matriarch of the gang of thieves. Arriving late in the proceedings, with only a few scenes she is able to make us wish we knew a lot more about her character.

In much smaller roles, William Frawley as Cooper's boss & Akim Tamiroff, as a Spanish police official blinded by Dietrich's beauty, do well with their few minutes on the screen.


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