Wife vs. Secretary (1936) Poster

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suspicious minds
blanche-227 December 2005
Jean Harlow is the secretary no wife wants her husband to have in "Wife vs. Secretary" starring Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, and Harlow, with an early appearance by James Stewart. It's hard to believe, looking at this film, that Jean Harlow would be dead a year later. Less blonde than in some earlier films, and far more subdued, she plays the indispensable, smart, and efficient secretary of Clark Gable. Gable is a high-pressured businessman happily married to Myrna Loy. All is well until her mother-in-law advises her to make Gable get rid of that good-looking assistant. Slowly, Loy begins to realize that everyone in their circle is assuming an affair, which up to that point hadn't crossed her mind. It does now.

Harlow is involved with James Stewart, and he doesn't want her to work after they get married. Her job, he feels, is too exciting and important and will threaten their marriage. Harlow is half in love with Gable and refuses to quit. Stewart is adorable and gives a hint of what will be truly be one of the great screen personas.

The cast is splendid. Gable is his usual charming self; Loy and Harlow are perfect casting as unique women who are complete opposites. Their final scene together consists of only a long look. It's very effective, as is the acting of both women throughout. Loy's scene with her mother-in-law is heartbreaking.

This is a dated film but very satisfying. Although it's wonderful to see these stars together, it's sad to realize they're all gone now, and that young Harlow has been gone for 68 years. Quite a loss.
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Sophisticated and intelligent film belies silly title.
David Atfield31 January 2000
It sounds like some sort of cheap sex farce, but this wonderful gem from MGM is actually a very sophisticated work. At its heart are the brilliant performances of five shining stars. Myrna Loy, her miraculously beautiful face subtlely registering her consumption by the green eyed monster. Clark Gable, exhaustingly energetic and effortlessly charming. May Robson, worldly wise and utterly compassionate. James Stewart, in an early supporting role displays the sincere simplicity that was to become his trademark. And Jean Harlow, luminous and intelligent - with a practical notion of love - but playing temptation better than any actor I've ever seen. Watch that scene where she takes off Gable's shoes. So sad that she died only a year after this film was made.

At the helm of this under-rated film is the great Clarence Brown, one of the great stylists of the cinema, who was able to take a simple story and give it depth - watch the gossip and the prejudice of the observers that slowly manipulate Loy, Gable and Harlow into distrusting themselves. Magnificent production and costume designs and great music flesh out the film, and make it a memorable experience. And it's very sexy for its time too! If it weren't for the slightly forced happy ending this film would be perfection itself.
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"I'm the best, aren't I?"
Michael Bo3 July 2006
This is a perfect little film, absolutely well-rounded and exquisite. Beautifully scripted, intelligently directed, ebulliently acted.

Clark Gable is the successful publisher, newly married to society lady Myrna Loy who, although very modern and not jealously disposed, begins to suspect that he is carrying on an affair with his bleach-blonde secretary, Jean Harlow. As Gable's mother states, laconically of her son, "You wouldn't blame a boy for stealing a piece of candy".

All fluff, right? Light as air, unsubstantial? Of course it is, it takes masters of their craft to make this plot stick, to make the movie plain unforgettable. Gable was never better, he seems to relish every second he is on screen, and there is none of the masculine stiffness about him that his worst performances have. He is a joy to watch with the always delightful Loy, their scenes together bristle and self-combust, and they are a really sweet, engaging couple. Loy has to be the most sophisticated creature ever to be filmed, she is SO cool and contemporary ("I'm the best, aren't I?", she says with just the slightest sardonic hint.) Harlow isn't given as much to work with, and she has to downplay her sassy sexiness in order not to tip the scales. But she is still almost all Harlow, and they go as far as they possibly could under the Production Code. The scene with Harlow and Gable in the Havana hotel room is all about sex, as we are left in no doubt.

So, watch it and love it. It is as perfect a piece of 30's film-making as you are likely to see.
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Very close to a perfect movie
thomculbertson8 May 2002
It goes without saying that the best Myrna Loy movies have William Powell - but this movie has enough cast that it can virtually throw away Jimmy Stewart and still carry you along with the strength of the character performances. Clark "Big Ears" Gable is not my favorite star, but he plays the role of the loving but thoughtless husband perfectly. He believably pulls off being shrewd in business, but naive enough of his personal life to be almost innocent while looking completely guilty.

Actually, it is the pair of leading ladies that makes this movie so great - Myrna Loy and Jean Harlow. Myrna is great in everything she does - and so is Harlow. Harlow is proof that the original is nearly always the best. Anyone who has ever enjoyed a Marilyn Monroe movie is simply watching second best - Harlow was the original "blonde bombshell" - and is still the best. Her usual forte is comedy, but she nails this light dramatic role perfectly. There are times when you don't know who to cheer for - the Wife or the Secretary - and that's the movie. The whole tension rides on which of these two ladies Gable chooses - or, rather, which one the audience wants him to choose. Myrna may have been the only actress who could have given Harlow a run for her money - and Harlow may have been the only one who could challenge Myrna Loy.

Myrna Loy and Jean Harlow teamed up in another movie - "Libeled Lady" - another tour de force of casting with William Powell and Spencer Tracy along for the ride. "Lady" is a very good movie; a comedy with both drawing room and slapstick elements. This type of comedy is usually more my cup of tea, but as good as "Lady" is, "Wife vs. Secretary" is better - mainly because "Lady" doesn't let Harlow bust loose until the end of the movie.

The light touch that these two great actresses bring to "Wife vs. Secretary" offsets one of the fundamental conflicts and tragedies of life - that though we are often presented with two paths in life, we can only choose one - knowing that we will always wonder about the other....
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Loy, Gable and Harlow shine in this great comedy
Incalculacable27 June 2006
In this wonderful comedy/drama, all three major stars go against their stereotyped roles. Clark Gable, for example, plays devoted husband and businessman instead of a tough guy like he usually does. Jean Harlow plays a hard working, good natured secretary, who doesn't seem to know just how damn sexy and gorgeous she is, and no wise cracks! Then there is the lovely Myrna Loy, who plays an extremely sexy wife (in contrast to her other wife roles). This could have been another formulaic, predictable film but the stars – Loy, Harlow and Gable – shine in their roles and make this a truly funny, magical film.

The conflict starts when Linda Stanhope's (a gorgeous Myrna Loy) mother in law makes a careless comment about how nice her son's (a dashing Clark Gable) – Linda's Husband - secretary (played by Jean Harlow) is. From there, a usually non-jealous Linda becomes increasingly suspicious to her husbands actions. Many things seem to point to the conclusion that Van is having an affair. Hm!

It's rather tragic that this brilliant piece of comedy is not that well known, as it should be. All three stars are exquisite and really entertaining to watch and raises above the boring, run of the mill comedy/dramas. Wife Vs. Secretary is a great movie - I thoroughly enjoyed it.
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A golden love triangle...
Poseidon-328 September 2004
All of the MGM machinery is in place to make this slight little story into an enjoyable bit of entertainment. Three of the studio's biggest and most endearing stars headline the film. Gable plays a hotshot businessman who has a beautiful, affectionate wife (Loy) at home and a beautiful, dutiful secretary (Harlow) at the office. Loy has no reason to feel threatened by the curvy, good-natured Harlow until Gable's mother (Robson) plants the seeds of doubt in her mind. Once her friends chime in as well and Gable and Harlow are in the midst of a major, hush-hush deal, she begins to think that perhaps she is the odd man out. Meanwhile, (a very young) Stewart waits patiently for Harlow to give up her career and marry him. The title comes true in one, fairly-considerate, verbal sparring match near the end. Gable is extremely charming and offhanded in this film. He does as he pleases and doesn't care to answer to anyone or explain his behavior. Loy is also very witty and refreshingly forward-thinking for most of the movie. The couple shares a delightful on screen relationship in which a healthy sex life is clearly implied. Harlow (sporting hair a shade or two darker than when she's playing an outwardly sexual character) does an admirable job of portraying the dedicated, indispensable assistant who may really have some unexplored feelings for her boss. Though the plot is contrived and simplistic in the extreme, the stars do manage to put it over and hold interest. It's not a very realistic film, but who wanted that anyway during The Depression? It's a frothy, fun, occasionally dramatic piece of old Hollywood candy.
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Don't Look for Trouble Where There Isn't Any because if You Don't Find It, You'll Make It
Claudio Carvalho17 November 2012
In New York, the magazine publisher Van "V.S." Stanhope (Clark Gable) and his beloved wife Linda (Myrna Loy) have been happily married for three years and are in love with each other. Van is a dynamic executive of the Stanhope Publications and works very close to his dedicated and efficient secretary Helen "Whitney" Wilson (Jean Harlow), who is a beautiful young woman engaged with Dave (James Stewart).

When Van's mother Mimi (May Robson) poisons Linda about the relationship of her son with his secretary, Linda becomes jealous of her. Whitney and Dave have an argument and she breaks with him. Meanwhile Van is secretly planning to buy a magazine owned by Underwood (George Barbier) and Whitney helps him with the strategy. When Whitney discovers that the competitor Hanson House is also disputing the magazine, she travels to Havana to help Van to close the business with Underwood. They are well- succeeded in their intent and celebrate until late night. When Linda calls Van at 2:00 PM, Whitney answers the phone call and Linda believes that Van is really having an affair with Whitney. In the end, don't look for trouble where there isn't any because if you don't find it, you'll make it.

"Wife vs. Secretary" is an adorable romantic comedy by Clarence Brown with Clark Gable, Jean Harlow and Myrna Loy in the lead roles. The intelligent screenplay is very well written, with funny situations. James Stewart in a supporting role in the beginning of his career has the final and most important line of this movie. The talented Jean Harlow passed away on the next year of cerebral edema caused by uremic poisoning, in a great loss for the cinema industry. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Ciúmes" ("Jealousy")
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Lite Fluff from MGM
nycritic17 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Considered ultra-modern in its day, WIFE VS. SECRETARY is the story of a misunderstanding that leads the wife of a businessman to believe he is having an affair with his secretary. Nothing else really happens in this light comedy, but there is a slight suggestion that the secretary, played by Jean Harlow, may have had something a little closer than just a work relationship with her employer, here played by Clark Gable. That this notion is reinforced once Myrna Loy's character ponders leaving Gable makes Harlow's character only a little more willing to let loose, but the story never quite takes the risk of leaping into that direction and opts for the classic happy ending. Note for a small appearance by Janes Stewart playing Harlow's boyfriend; even in such an early point in his career he seems already showing a little hint of darker performances in the future.
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The Genius of Jean
falconcitypaul20 March 2008
I treasure this film for Jean Harlow's performance, capped by a magnificent, simple line reading: "You are a fool. For which I am grateful."

She had amazing range for an actress who died at 26. Howard Hughes presented her in "Hell's Angels" (1930) as an amoral menace to civilization. (When she slips into "something comfortable" she actually puts on clothes.) It would be charitable to call her appearance in that picture acting. Yet within a couple of years she could dominate the screen by the force of genuine talent.

Her starring career blazed briefly, but with almost no wasted roles. Here she gets to behave like a normal working class woman--not a débutante, nor a tenement dweller, nor a criminal's moll, nor a voracious mantrap, nor a comic banshee, nor an adventuress working the China Seas or Malay docksides.

Clark Gable and Myrna Loy have more customary roles. A part this quiet remains a rarity for the winsome, brilliant, and doomed Harlow.
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A good Gable/Harlow flick!
Rhondaluvsclassics31 December 2006
I adore the films in which Clark Gable and Jean Harlow starred opposite one another, and although this isn't my personal favorite - it is a very good and must-see movie. Harlow excels in her dramatic role as the highly-efficient, dependable and beautiful secretary to Gable's character of company executive. Myrna Loy gets on my nerves as the jealous yet believable wife. There are several awesome and memorable scenes. This movie shows us that not everything in life is at it appears to be. I found the interaction between wife and secretary to be particularly good. Overall, I highly recommend this movie and the cast is top-notch!
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A Delightful Comedic Romp
aromatic-22 December 2000
Myrna Loy vs. Jean Harlow, and when the man in question is Clark Gable in his prime, I'd fight over him too. A typical situation comedy with the usual misunderstandings, plot contrivances, and double entendres, is made delightful from the magnificent cast from top to bottom. Fast-paced and frantic, this is one to lie back, prop your feet up, and enjoy.
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Some psychic foresight would have helped.
bkoganbing6 May 2004
I had never seen Wife vs. Secretary until last year and because it was the only film that Clark Gable made with James Stewart, I wanted to see what these two would be like together.

The closest Gable and Stewart have in the way of a scene together is at a roller rink where Gable has brought wife Myrna Loy and Stewart brought girlfriend Jean Harlow. Gable and Stewart are on opposite sides of the floor and never get together.

It's not the best film Gable ever did with Harlow or Loy, but it's good fun. Basically Loy begins to have doubts about Gable's fidelity because the beautiful Ms. Harlow is his secretary. And the doubt is continually being reinforced by Loy's friends, a nasty group of gossips. Innocent events are continually being misinterpreted, but everyone is on the same page by the end of the movie.

Gable was a big star by then, MGM's biggest. Too bad no one knew that Jimmy Stewart was also going to be a cinema legend or some scenes would have included them together.
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Slickly Entertaining
dougdoepke12 January 2017
It's Rolls Royce MGM hitting on all eight cylinders— lavish interiors, pretty people, well- upholstered crowds, and sprightly dialog. So who can ask for more. Not me. Gable's a hard- driving top executive with a super efficient secretary (Harlow) and a loving wife at home (Loy). Trouble is, he spends all his time making deals and neglecting his patient wife. At the office he depends a lot on the fetching Harlow, slowly making wife Loy suspicious. But getting his attention is difficult since he's so wrapped up in the latest big deal. Thus, straightening things out in expected Hollywood manner makes up the narrative.

Gable's at his charming energetic best, while Harlow gets an unusual non-vampish role, and Loy is winning in the sympathetic wifely part. Together, their characters are uniformly likable, unusual for what may be a romantic triangle. It's not hard seeing why Gable made six films with the star-crossed Harlow. There's real chemistry at work between them. Also, a boyish Jimmy Stewart turns up in an early supporting role as Harlow's sometimes swain. Not surprising for the 30's, the business world is portrayed as tricky, at best.

Anyway, director Brown keeps things moving in smooth fashion, so all the talk seldom palls. Overall, it's a slickly entertaining 90-minutes featuring three legends of their time and our own.
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A beautiful film.
telegrafic18 September 2015
My grandmother use to say this was a beautiful film and I think she is just right. It tells the story of a happily married couple Van (Clark Gable) and Linda (Myrna Loy) and husband's beautiful secretary Whitey (great Jean Harlow) and how she gets into her life and almost destroy their marriage but, on the contrary of most miss Harlow films, she does not play an unscrupulous woman but a sincere and honest one: she is in love with her boss but she acts honestly by advising his wife not to let him go after they have an argument. Film begins as a delightful comedy to turn later in to a drama but always convinces, especially because of an excellent actors' work and a good script including well written lines for almost everyone. Even Van's mother Mimi (May Robson) has great lines although her little time appearance on the screen. A great film.
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Loy Vs. Harlow.
AaronCapenBanner3 November 2013
Clark Gable stars in this comedy as Van Stanhope, a successful magazine executive who is happily married to his wife Linda(played By Myrna Loy). When Van hires a new secretary, the beautiful Whitey(played by Jean Harlow) Linda tries not to be jealous, but even Van's mother warns her that Van may stray, just like his father did, because of temptation. Despite the fact that Whitey has a boyfriend(a young Jimmy Stewart!) Linda becomes convinced that there has been an affair, which threatens to break up the marriage, despite denials... Good actors can't overcome obvious and predictable comedy that isn't funny enough to make it work either. Notable only for the cast.
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Not so typical
gemmastar26 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Jean Harlow and Clark Gable do share chemistry. You can check it in any of the films they were together, but in this one it is so subtle and exquisite... From here on, it contains definitely spoilers: I've read that this is the typical story with a typical happy ending. I don't agree with that, in fact I strongly disagree. It is obvious that the secretary is attracted to the boss, just look at her staring at him in his bedroom, and she doesn't seem so drunk as he is. It is a story of sacrifice, a story about a non confident wife, an immature husband and a good girl who prefers to end up attached to one boy of her kind who doesn't want her to work and prefers her at home having lots of babies. Where is the happy ending???
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Top talents vs. an unsurprising script...
moonspinner5519 April 2008
Clark Gable gives a giddy, frisky performance as a happily-married magazine magnate in New York City who works closely but professionally with efficient though somewhat demure secretary Jean Harlow; his wife (Myrna Loy) and her fiancée (James Stewart) misconstrue the business-only relationship as something more vital, and pretty soon a subtle attraction does develop between the two workaholics during a conference trip in Havana. Carefully elongated from a women's magazine short story, the screenplay here hits on some issues regarding even satisfying marriages which are still relevant today (mostly that gossip breeds mistrust, and it can come from all corners); still, it doesn't give Gable much to do except talk fast at the office and kiss Myrna in doorways. Loy suffers rather ridiculously (after discovering her hubby took his secretary along to Havana--she thinks in place of her--Loy refuses his calls and starts dressing like a widow!), but Gable obviously enjoyed working with her. Odd to find Harlow so low-keyed (her performance is really the only surprising thing the picture offers), but a Harlow without fizz is rather like a soda gone flat--tolerable, but disconcerting. **1/2 from ****
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Not a classic, but entertaining!
Matti-Man24 May 2006
Like many other reviewers here, I saw WIFE VS SECRETARY on TCM (UK) and thought it was a pleasantly diverting 83 minutes (running times are shorter on PAL). I've never been much of a fan of Jean Harlow, but I can see that she laid the groundwork for the platinum blondes that would follow her. Gable is great in the kind of role he excelled at, this one sandwiched between star-making turns in MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY and SAN FRANCISCO and just three years before the glorious GONE WITH THE WIND. Jimmy Stewart doesn't have much to do as Harlow's troglodyte boyfriend ("Me work, you have babies!") and, honestly, any of MGM's contract actors could have handled the part as well. Hard to believe that Stewart was himself just a couple of years away from beginning his star run in Capra movies like YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU (1938).

But for me, the star of this is Myrna Loy. Already Hollywood royalty when she made this, mostly due to her winning turn in THE THIN MAN (1934), I thought her best performance of this era was her lip-smacking portrayal of Fah Lo See, Fu Manchu's completely amoral daughter, in MASK OF FU MANCHU (1932). Watch the subtlety of her expressions as she first dismisses, the considers, then believes that her husband is dallying with his pretty but brash secretary. It's this sensitive portrayal that makes WIFE VS SECRETARY a cut above the standard MGM melodramas it was surrounded by ...
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Darned Good Film
DKosty12320 May 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This is one of Myrna Loy's better roles as a wife who listens to her mother-in-law and begins to suspect her husband- Clark Gable- is having an affair with his secretary-Jean Harlow. This story holds up pretty well for a film of this vintage.

What is interesting is towards the end of the film both Loy and Harlow have some of the saddest frowns I have ever seen on actresses in a movie. I almost wonder if they had to suck on a lemon before doing these scenes as the pucker looks so sad. Still, Loy who would really take off in the Thin Man Series is a perfectionist in this one- making Gable redo a kissing scene several times to make sure they got it right.

Harlow is great as the secretary who dating Jimmy Stewart in one of his earlier roles, and not a large part. At one point, Harlow gets mad at him and dumps him for pretty near half the film before getting back with him at the end. It is understandable how Loys character would suspect hankie and pansy with her husband's subordinate as Harlow looks pretty good.

Still, all the trouble is caused by the Mother-in-law here. She plants the suspicious seed into Loy which eventually blooms into divorce proceedings. Then Harlow breaks her train of thought and forgives Stewart as well. This one is worth watching, as a talented cast brings off an old warhorse of a script quite well considering this type of jealousy plot was already over-done in 1936.

They make the material seem fresher than it is.
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I love this movie, but something seems so odd and dated
barrymplsplus16 May 2017
This is a beautifully written comedy/drama, very typical of the best of the late 1930's. But this movie illustrates how much it was a man's world and the wife is never to be involved in his business. When Van (Gable) is putting together this big magazine take-over, he completely shuts out his wife, which is why she does not understand why Whitey (Jean Harlow) is down in Havana instead of her. If he had only told her of his hush-hush plans, the whole misunderstanding wouldn't have happened!

All of the actors are perfectly cast and do a wonderful job. This is exactly the kind of quality adult performance Jean Harlow was heading towards. What a tragedy she was dead within a year. This is also one of Clark Gable's best roles. He was excellent in this kind of light comedy/drama role...shame he didn't do more.
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Good Movie
GManfred1 April 2017
The cast was attractive, the script and plot were first-rate, and they did it all without obscenities or nudity. Makes you wonder how they made any hits in the 30's, doesn't it? Warner Bros. took some of their best stars and mixed in some top screenwriters and one of their best directors and produced a hit romantic comedy that makes movie-watching all worth it.

They also mixed in some of their top character actors (Hobart Cavanaugh, Marjorie Gateson and May Robson), and as a bonus, one of their best future stars in James Stewart. The story has been rehashed by many reviewers but it involves one of those awkward-circumstance misunderstandings that can be so entertaining in the right hands. Without going into great detail: Gable is married to Loy and depends on his secretary (Harlow) for much of his business details - too much for his wife, who is very trusting and loyal. The story sounds hackneyed but it's done so well it all works. If you're a fan of Golden Age films, you should see it. It's typical of Hollywood professionalism before the wheels came off in the 60's.
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A love triangle plot with some different twists
SimonJack8 January 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The cast for this 1936 MGM movies is first rate. The leads are top names of the day. Clark Gabe is Van, Jean Harlow is his secretary, Whitey, and Myrna Loy is his wife, Linda. The supporting cast is tops as well. May Robson is Mimi, George Barbier is Underwood, and Tom Dugan is Finney. And, James Stewart has a supporting role in only his second year and fourth feature film. He already had one film as the male lead, and he would have two more before this year (1936) was over.

The plot of "Wife versus Secretary" is a female love triangle (two females in love with the same man, whereas the usual is two mien competing of h same woman). Only, in this case, one of the women doesn't make a move for the man. Harlow plays straight, not wanting to break up a marriage in which her boss clearly loves his wife. But Loy's Linda begins to become jealous and suspicious. Van has to work late many nights. This is an age-old scenario in appearance. Even in the day this film was made, marriages went on the rocks over such situations. Most often they actually happened – a boss with his secretary or another woman.

But in this story, Linda knows that Van loves her. His affection toward his wife is obvious always. But her suspicion lies with Whitey. She doesn't doubt the working times they have to spend together, but she begins to think that Whitey may be using those as a way slowly to pry her husband away for herself.

This is a different twist on a common story, including one for the movies. And the ending is different and very good. The performance all are very good and the direction and technical work are very good. While it's interesting, and somewhat novel, there also isn't much excitement in the story to earn it more even stars. Most adults should enjoy it for the cast, but younger audiences today will likely find it dull.
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Loaded with star power
Antonius Block29 November 2016
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is loaded with star power – Jean Harlow, Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, and wow, even a young Jimmy Stewart. The story is straightforward – Gable is an executive, Loy is his wife, Harlow his secretary, and Stewart, Harlow's boyfriend. Harlow is incredibly helpful to Gable and works long hours with him, thus prompting rumors, but the two are absolutely innocent. Eventually Loy and Stewart get jealous of the time the two are spending together, and are concerned the two are having an affair.

I have to say, for a good part of the movie, it seemed reasonably good but somewhat false - the chemistry between Gable and Loy is just "ok", and the straight and narrow course Gable and Harlow take and the overall message of needing to trust in one's relationship seemed somehow influenced by the Hays Code to me.

On the positive side, both Gable and Harlow are in roles outside of their usual typecasting, including Harlow with her natural hair color. Harlow also stands up to Stewart's requests that she quit her job to focus on family (hooray especially for 1936!), and Harlow confronting Loy and ultimately sacrificing herself is a good scene. And, on top of all that, the very best scene is between Gable and Harlow, after they've been drinking in Havana following closing a deal they had worked on over sleepless nights. Innocence aside, there is a moment of truth when she's in the same hotel room in the wee hours, untying his shoes. Their conflicted stares are priceless and communicate brilliantly without words, until Harlow says at last "we've had an awful lot to drink". That scene alone makes the film worth watching, and shows Harlow's ability and potential to grow even further. How sad she would die the following year at the age of 26! As for this film -- the script is good, not great, but the screen presences here surely are.
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Make sure you watch the penultimate scene
richard-178715 October 2014
A lot of this is typical 1930s melodrama. The story continues because various of the characters fail to have the obvious conversations, which would have cleared things up in a jiffy.

The scene I found particularly interesting and innovative was the penultimate one. In the third from the end scene, Harlow shows up in Loy's stateroom aboard the French Liner ship she is planning to take to Europe to forget about her husband (Gable), whom she imagines, incorrectly, to have had a fling with his secretary Harlow during a business trip to Havana. Harlow tells Loy that if she leaves Gable now, he will turn to Harlow out of loneliness and Loy will never get him back. (Yes, that sounds like the mother's speech to Norma Shearer in The Women.) Loy believes, incorrectly, that she has already lost Gable, so she says she won't go back to him. Harlow tells her that that would make her (Harlow) happy.

The next scene takes place in Gable's office. He is talking with Harlow. We hear footsteps coming down the hall outside. Footsteps that take a long time. It turns out that they belong to the cleaning lady. Then, when she leaves, we hear footsteps again, very assertive footsteps, for a long time. Harlow gets up - she suspects it is Loy, come to return to her husband. And this time it is. Harlow then walks through the next, large office - more long footsteps - and leaves. The use of the footsteps is really very impressive.
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