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William A. Wellman
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It's bad enough that Clarice Kendall Andrews, Paula's irresponsible sister, comes home from celebrating Mardi Gras and drunkenly mentions that she got married during the festivities. What's worse is the fact that Paula knows that Clarice is still married to an equally irresponsible gigolo. Paula learns that the man Clarice married, Stephen Cormack, has skipped the country and his lawyer, thinking that Paula is Clarice, offers the older woman $5000 to annul the marriage. Paula's lawyer convinces her to pretend she's Cormack's husband until he can get Clarice's marriage annulled. Paula moves into Cormack's house and discovers he has two teen-aged children who consider her a gold-digger after their father's fortune. Meanwhile, Clarice's husband refuses to have their marriage annulled and tries to blackmail Paula into giving him to $10,000 for his silence. Written by
Clarice comes home from a Mardi Gras party and announces that she's just been married; her sister Paula (Sally Eilers) quickly points out that, inconveniently, she's already married to somebody else. It's up to Paula and family lawyer Burton Williams (Grant Mitchell) to come up with a plan: noting that a person can get ten years for bigamy, they swiftly decide to work first on an annulment for marriage number one, and then to take on marriage number two.
Not surprisingly, all does not go as swiftly as planned, and soon Paula is posing as her sister and moving into a very ritzy new home, where she encounters the new hubby's two children, who do not exactly offer a warm welcome to the new stepmother they assume is just another gold digger.
When their dad (Neil Hamilton) eventually makes it home and meets his bride as if for the first time (which, of course, it actually is), the plot gets even thicker; meanwhile, Clarice's first husband (Joseph Schildkraut) is lurking, smelling a buck in this setup somewhere.
It's all very funny, and the actors have a field day with some pretty nutty roles. Schildkraut is especially hilarious as the would-be womanizer. Mitchell is also very funny as the quick thinking lawyer of practical mind but dubious morals. Hamilton is appropriately confused yet capable as the leading man; Sally Eilers is very good as the responsible older sister who is drawn into a crazy situation and finds herself unexpectedly falling for it all. The relationship between the two leads is never particularly surprising but they do carry if off with energy and style.
The two kids also do wellenergetic do-it-yourselfers, they certainly are not hesitant to take a hand in managing family affairs. Their scenes with Schildkraut are super.
It's a cute movie that offers lots of easy laughs. Don't miss Robert Greig and Mary Gordon in small roles aswhat else?the butler and the cook.
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