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Terry Randall, rich society beauty, has decided to see if she can break into the Broadway theatre scene without her family connections. She goes to live in a theatrical boarding house and finds her life caught up with those of the other inmates and the ever-present disappointment that theatrical hopefuls must live with. Her smart-mouth roommate, Jean, is approached by a powerful producer for more than just a role. And Terry's father has decided to give her career the shove by backing a production for her to star in, in which she's sure to flop. But his machinations hurt more than just Terry. Written by
Something very sinister happened to movies between 1937 and the 1950s that made this kind of film impossible to make. It's a terrific example of ensemble acting, with no one taking a back seat to anyone else. Ginger Rogers is absolutely amazing, especially after seeing some of the fluffy stuff she did with Astaire. It's hard to believe this is the same actress.
The dialogue zips along with lighting speed including some great laugh-out-loud one-liners. What a wonderful script! Very much like "Grand Hotel" in its structure and shockingly adult themes.
The relationships between all the women are so complex it's hard to believe it was actually made when it was. It makes men look very bad - at best we're imbeciles, at worst, Svengalis. And it has the same kind of uneasiness and disillusionment with the theater that "Sunset Boulevard" had with the movies. I wish there were more like it.
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