13 user 5 critic

Ready, Willing and Able (1937)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 6 March 1937 (USA)
Two songwriters want to cast a British star in their new show.



(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A stay-at-home husband and his businesswoman wife plan separate vacations, but he doesn't go fishing. He masquerades as a barber on her pleasure cruise.

Director: Frank Tuttle
Stars: Genevieve Tobin, Roland Young, Ralph Forbes
Certificate: Passed Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Dan McGinty has great success in his chosen field of crooked politics. But endangers it all in one crazy moment of honesty...

Director: Preston Sturges
Stars: Brian Donlevy, Muriel Angelus, Akim Tamiroff
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

One dark summer night, Francesca Cunningham, a once world famed pianist, escapes from her hospital room and tries to commit suicide by jumping off a local bridge. She is rescued and taken ... See full summary »

Director: Compton Bennett
Stars: James Mason, Ann Todd, Herbert Lom
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The adventurous Lady Edwina Esketh travels to the princely state of Ranchipur in India with her husband, Lord Albert Esketh, who is there to purchase some of the Maharajah's horses. She's ... See full summary »

Director: Clarence Brown
Stars: Myrna Loy, Tyrone Power, George Brent
Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A man who loves an aspiring opera singer is prepared to sacrifice everything to help her with her career, even though he knows she doesn't love him.

Director: Victor Schertzinger
Stars: Grace Moore, Leo Carrillo, Robert Allen
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

An 1890s widow has two daughters and two sons. The daughters fall in love with the same gentleman.

Director: Rowland V. Lee
Stars: Anne Shirley, Ruby Keeler, James Ellison
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Thrown out of the Riviera, a family of grifters meets a lonely, vulnerable rich old woman and insinuate themselves into her life while they sponge off her.

Directors: Richard Wallace, Lewis Milestone, and 2 more credits »
Stars: Janet Gaynor, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Roland Young
I Love Melvin (1953)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Melvin Hoover, a budding photographer for Look magazine, accidentally bumps into a young actress named Judy LeRoy in the park. They start to talk and Melvin soon offers to do a photo spread... See full summary »

Director: Don Weis
Stars: Donald O'Connor, Debbie Reynolds, Una Merkel
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Photographer Grif Henderson is assigned a photo shoot in Paris. He decides to take his wife, Jenny, and his hippie son, Davey, with him on the shoot. Everything gets mucked up when she ... See full summary »

Director: Jerry Paris
Stars: James Garner, Debbie Reynolds, Maurice Ronet
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Matt Brennan runs into Jo Holloway, the Red Cross girl he romanced in Europe when he was a flyer in World War II, when he is offered a job by jet manufacturer Leland Willis as a test pilot.... See full summary »

Director: Stuart Heisler
Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Eleanor Parker, Raymond Massey
Nice Girl? (1941)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A young girl finds herself attracted to one of her father's business partners.

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Deanna Durbin, Franchot Tone, Walter Brennan
I'll Be Yours (1947)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A small-town girl tells a small fib to a wealthy businessman; complications ensue.

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Deanna Durbin, Tom Drake, William Bendix


Cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Dixon ...
Pinky Blair
J. Van Courtland
Clara Heineman
Barry Granville
Truman Hardy
Teddy Hart ...
Yip Nolan
Edward McNeil
Al Shaw ...
Moving Man (as Shaw)
Sam Lee ...
Moving Man (as Lee)
Sir Samuel Buffington (Credits) / Bloomington (in Film)
May Boley ...
Mrs. Beadle


Two songwriters want to cast a British star in their new show.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

6 March 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amores de Opereta  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Last film of Ross Alexander, who died two months before this film was released. See more »


Referenced in The Honeymooners: The $99,000 Answer (1956) See more »


Too Marvelous for Words
(1937) (uncredited)
Music by Richard A. Whiting
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Played during the opening and end credits and as background music
Played on piano by Lee Dixon and spoken by Ross Alexander
Reprised on piano by Lee Dixon at a party
Sung by Ross Alexander at a party
Was the show's big production number at its opening, sung by Ross Alexander (dubbed by James Newill) and Wini Shaw and chorus,
and danced to by Ruby Keeler, Lee Dixon and chorus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Last Look At Ross Alexander
18 December 2001 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

Mistaken for a famous British singing star, an American college girl decides she's READY, WILLING AND ABLE to conquer Broadway - especially after meeting the young scriptwriter who's producing the play...

A fine example of the musical comedies which Warner Brothers seemed to produce so effortlessly during the 1930's, it's a shame this film has become so obscure. With good production values & a snappy storyline, it's still a pleasant entertainment. The major missing component is Busby Berkeley; the final production number, with Ruby Keeler & dancer Lee Dixon hoofing it upon the keys of a giant typewriter, fairly cries for the Master to send it over the top.

Pert & pretty, Miss Keeler is, as always, much fun to watch. Many of her scenes are given the added attractions of the lovely Carol Hughes, playing her best friend. Wini Shaw, as a singer with too much past & tart-tongued secretary Jane Wyman also contribute to the fun.

The comedy relief is largely handled by Allen Jenkins as a loudmouthed agent, Louise Fazenda as a faded Shakespearean actress & Hugh O'Connell as a society fuddy-duddy. Comic cameos by E. E. Clive & Lillian Kemble-Cooper as an English knight & lady, and Barnett Parker as a helpful British butler, are also welcome. Movie mavens will spot an unbilled Carlyle Moore Jr. as a dockside reporter.

Ultimately, though, there is sadness attached to this film. The leading man, Ross Alexander, shot himself before the film could be released. This was his final film; he was only 29. Born Ross Smith in Brooklyn in 1907, Alexander had the personality, talent & good looks which should have spelled significant stardom. But Hollywood is notoriously unpredictable, and Alexander, unhappy with the way his career was going & obviously still troubled by the gunshot suicide of his first wife in December of 1935, placed a pistol to his own head on January 2, 1937.

Once dead, it was Warner Brothers that paid him the final indignity. Having a completed film with a star who was not only deceased, but a suicide as well, was a bit more than the Studio wanted to deal with. So, cutting their losses, they gave Ross Alexander fifth place billing on the lineup of performers for READY, WILLING AND ABLE, where he should have received first or second.

Outside of his appearance in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM (1935), he is almost forgotten now. Ross Alexander was a victim of the Hollywood system and his own private anguish, each of which fed on the other. He should be remembered as a fine young actor, who, in a very few years, brought lots of enjoyment to movie audiences. This is typified by his best scene in READY, WILLING AND ABLE, where he introduces the Johnny Mercer lyrics for 'Too Marvelous For Words,' by gently reciting them to Ruby Keeler. It is a tremendously poignant few moments.

21 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: