A young woman (Stanley Timberlake) dumps her fiancée (Craig Fleming) and runs off with her sister's (Roy Timberlake) husband (Peter Kingsmill). They marry, settle in Baltimore, and Stanley ... See full summary »
Olivia de Havilland,
Nan Reynolds encourages her copywriter husband Bill to open his own agency. Nearly out of business, he finally gets a client. Former girlfriend Patricia Berkeley writes a very successful ... See full summary »
Robert will do anything to get the big account that has eluded him. His public relations business makes public angels of rich scoundrels. Jean needs someone to save the paper and she wants ... See full summary »
Olivia de Havilland,
Spinster poetess Susan Grieve lives in a Manhattan apartment where naval hero Slick Novak comes with her for a nightcap. Next morning they visit her Connecticut farm where Novak tells her ... See full summary »
Renowned stage actors Basil Underwood and Joyce Arden are partners on and off the stage. An occupational hazard for Basil is that women often fall in love with what they see of him on the stage, he who sometimes indulges that adoration. Basil and Joyce's personal life is passionate and tempestuous characterized by constant fighting and making up, which is often continued on-stage under their breaths. After their latest fight and reconciliation, they decide to get married... for the twelfth time. They are determined to make it to the altar this time. But Basil feels he needs to wipe clean the slate first by doing a favor for a stranger, Henry Grant, whose fiancée has fallen in love with him. With his latest script in hand, Basil vows to make Henry's fiancée fall out of love with him by playing the cad. He finds that it may be more difficult than he first imagined when he finds out that the woman in question is Marcia West, the young woman who professed her love to him earlier in the ... Written by
The screenplay was originally titled, "Gentleman after midnight." See more »
After Basil ties (off camera) his ascot before breakfast, the tie's spots are showing. Immediately after, same scene, the tie has stripes. Then, in the third scene immediately following, the tie again shows spots. See more »
This Aunt Ella Paisley!
[Grabbing his hand]
Oh, Mr. Underwood! That hand! That Hand! That love line, and that mound of Venus. You'll be married once. Heaven help the poor girl, the lucky thing.
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It's Love I'm After (Archie Mayo, 1937) is just a delight, an incredibly well-written screwball comedy that keeps the expertly-crafted witticisms flying thick and fast. Given the wrong material or the wrong direction, Leslie Howard could appear unbearably smug, but here he gets the role of a lifetime - and makes the most of it. He's a conceited ham, with two eyes for the ladies, who spends most of his time off-stage (and some of it on) warring with thespian girlfriend Bette Davis. Resolving one day to turn over not just a new leaf, but a whole book of them, he's forced to play the last word in unthinking bounders to disillusion the fiancée (Olivia de Havilland) of an old friend's son. It's a great set up: a reformed character having to appear even more reprehensible than before in order to do the decent thing, and it's developed in consistently surprising, imaginative ways.
And then there's the cast. Howard is flawless as the conceited, confused, compromised, increasingly desperate cad - who has more than a little of John Barrymore about him - with Davis giving her best comedic performance as his long-suffering lover, who packs an explosive temper. De Havilland is perfectly cast, both cloying and appealing as the starstruck girl who'll excuse anything her rambunctious idol does, while Eric Blore excels as Howard's valet and co-conspirator. Blore, one of the great supporting comics, is great in everything, but I've never seen him as funny as here. Displaying his customary lack of vanity and willingness to do anything for a laugh, he spends most of one scene making ridiculous bird noises and another displacing his silly toupee. Blore also gets the best line of the film, responding to Bonnie Granville's cry of "I know something you don't know" with one of the funniest, most petulant one-liners I've ever heard.
Drawing on Shakespeare to gets both its pathos and its laughs, in the vein of To Be or Not to Be and Withnail & I, It's Love I'm After is streets ahead of most other golden era comedies: intelligent, romantic and uproariously funny, eliciting the particular buzz that comes with watching something that's clearly very special.
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