Lester Dorr (Attendant), Earl Eby (Entertainer) and Robert McKenzie are in studio records/casting call lists as actors in this movie but they never appeared. Eby may have been the pianist at Dubin's, but he is never shown. Bert Roach is listed as "The Host" in the onscreen credits and may possibly be seen in long-shot in one of the party scenes, but for all practical purposes he was deleted from the final print. Some of the other actors can be briefly seen but have no lines. There may have been extensive editing, since it is listed in studio records as an 8-reel production, but only runs 70 minutes. See more »
Having now watched Universal’s CAROLE LOMBARD: THE GLAMOUR COLLECTION in its entirety, I can say that of the 6 films included two are classics – HANDS ACROSS THE TABLE (1935) and TRUE CONFESSION (1937) – two more are lesser efforts but still delightful – WE’RE NOT DRESSING (1934) and THE PRINCESS COMES ACROSS (1936) – while the remaining two titles are essentially routine and wouldn’t have stood a chance had they been released on their own (the set being devoid of any substantial extras, they could then be considered as such).
That is not to say that this particular vehicle (which I wasn’t familiar with) isn’t a pleasant diversion per se – at 70 minutes, it’s certainly innocuous enough; still, comparing it to the comic gems on offer in this set, it definitely comes up lacking! To begin with, there’s nothing remotely original about either plot (Lombard is torn between two men – one is wealthy and conceited but genuinely in love, the other is ambitious and something of a playboy) or setting (high society); true, this type of romantic comedy was typical for Depression-era America – but it’s among the most trivial examples of escapist fare that I’ve watched!
Besides, Lombard is let down by her leading men – after all, Preston Foster and Cesar Romero are hardly Fred MacMurray and Ralph Bellamy (who played similar, but more rounded, characters in HANDS ACROSS THE TABLE)...and the same thing can be said of director Walter Lang (here demonstrating little of the style conveyed by Mitchell Leisen throughout HANDS, or even the inspired craziness of TRUE CONFESSION). Actually, the whole enterprise feels invincibly second-rate: however, one shouldn’t blame this on the change in studio from Paramount (which made all the other titles in this set) to Universal because, truth be told, Lombard’s next outing – MY MAN GODFREY (1936; also released by the latter) – proved to be one of her best films!
LOVE BEFORE BREAKFAST, then, features all the typical ingredients: love/hate relationship, misunderstanding, embarrassment, romantic threat, etc. Richard Carle appears as an elderly gentleman who, in spite of being a bachelor, offers Foster advice on his amorous situation; climaxing with an unconvincing storm at sea, this sequence is nonetheless capped by an amusing – and most unconventional – wedding ceremony presided over by familiar character actor E. E. Clive!
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