Dramatic School (1938)

Passed  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  9 December 1938 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.4/10 from 260 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 3 critic

Aspiring actress Louise Muban attends the prestigious Paris School of Drama during the day and works at a dreary factory assembling gas meters at night. She daydreams and "acts" her way ... See full summary »



(screen play), (screen play), 3 more credits »
0Check in
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Biography | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

This biography follows the ups and downs of Florenz Ziegfeld, famed producer of extravagant stage revues.

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: William Powell, Myrna Loy, Luise Rainer
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 1845 Vienna, Johann Strauss II - Schani to his friends - would rather write and perform waltzes than anything else, this at a time when a waltz is not considered proper society music. ... See full summary »

Directors: Julien Duvivier, Victor Fleming, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Luise Rainer, Fernand Gravey, Miliza Korjus
Comedy | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the Gay Nineties, a seductive nightclub singer contends with several suitors, including a jealous escaped convict and a handsome temperance league member.

Director: Lowell Sherman
Stars: Mae West, Cary Grant, Owen Moore
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A male Polish secret agent and a female Russian secret-police spy smuggle messages to St. Petersburg in candlesticks. While chasing after stolen candlesticks they discover each other's ... See full summary »

Director: George Fitzmaurice
Stars: William Powell, Luise Rainer, Robert Young
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The story of a farmer in China: a story of humility and bravery. His father gives Wang Lung a freed slave as wife. By diligence and frugality the two manage to enlarge their property. But ... See full summary »

Directors: Sidney Franklin, Victor Fleming, and 2 more credits »
Stars: Paul Muni, Luise Rainer, Walter Connolly
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.

Director: Richard Wallace
Stars: Janet Gaynor, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Richard Carlson
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Andy's girlfriend Polly is planning to spend Christmas at her grandmother's, which puts a kink in his plans to take her to the country club Christmas party. He agrees (for a fee) to pretend... See full summary »

Director: George B. Seitz
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Lewis Stone
Dancing Co-Ed (1939)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Right before the dancing Tobius' ought to film a new production, his wife tells Freddy Tobius that she's pregnant. So the producer desperately has to seek a replacement and starts a ... See full summary »

Director: S. Sylvan Simon
Stars: Lana Turner, Richard Carlson, Artie Shaw and His Orchestra
The Toy Wife (1938)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

The beautiful and frivolous wife of a plantation owner in antebellum Louisiana, proves unsatisfactory at running the household, leading her serious-minded husband to enlist the help of her unmarried sister.

Director: Richard Thorpe
Stars: Luise Rainer, Melvyn Douglas, Robert Young
Kitty (1945)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An 18th century London wench gets involved with the nobility.

Director: Mitchell Leisen
Stars: Paulette Goddard, Ray Milland, Patric Knowles
Big City (1937)
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

To avoid a taxi war, city officials blame a gang bombing on driver Joe Benton's wife Anna and put her on a ship to deport her. The mayor is speaker at a boxers' banquet where Joe pleads for... See full summary »

Directors: Frank Borzage, George B. Seitz
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Luise Rainer, Charley Grapewin
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A drunken college student invites a dance hostess to the big college dance and then forgets he asked her. When she shows up at school, he tries to get rid of her, but she won't leave. ... See full summary »

Director: S. Sylvan Simon
Stars: Lew Ayres, Lana Turner, Tom Brown


Cast overview, first billed only:
Alan Marshal ...
John Hubbard ...
Fleury (as Anthony Allan)
Henry Stephenson ...
Madame Charlot
Melville Cooper ...
Erik Rhodes ...
Georges Mounier
Virginia Grey ...
Jean Chatburn ...


Aspiring actress Louise Muban attends the prestigious Paris School of Drama during the day and works at a dreary factory assembling gas meters at night. She daydreams and "acts" her way through life, and her fellow students at school begin to suspect her stories are just that - fabrications. After Louise begins to weave an actual meeting with a debonair playboy into a fantasy of club dates and romance, her co-student Nana discovers the lie when she too meets the playboy. Nana sets a trap for Louise, and the result is an end to one fantasy and the realization of another. Written by Ron Kerrigan

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Dramatic Intimate Revelations Behind The Scenes See more »


Drama | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

9 December 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Coups de théâtre  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Franchot Tone was briefly scheduled to appear in the male lead. See more »


(1936) (uncredited)
Written by Johnny Mercer, Phil Ohman and Macy Teetor
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A gem for any closet sophisticate and old-school romantic. Miss. Rainer is MAGIC
21 July 2003 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

(Sorry for any misspellings or grammar problems, I wrote this fast.)

I saw this film last night on Turner Classics. I was very touched by the film's romantic sensibility. Yes, the film has a B movie feel. Yes, the performances are typically surface in a 1930s outdated style. Yes, at times it was obvious this was not Paris but a studio sound stage. But I forgive all of those things because that's what one does in film and theater: suspend disbelief to experience the characters' journey.

Here, the characters are all drama students who are either utterly disenchanted (Paulette Goddard) or romantically idealistic (Luise Rainer). All of the characters share the dreams of stardom and I find that element a universal and timeless trait: To be a successful STAR.

I was captivated by Rainer. She's no different than how Marilyn Monroe (or any great artist) must have felt on her way up. Rainer is magical, almost like a silent screen star with her exagerated facial expressions. And also like Garbo with her dark, European voice. I think that Rainer is the film's heroine in the traditional sense of Heroism. She overcomes poverty, social criticism, and artistic limitations by just living through her own perspective and by her own rules. Also, she's a very young woman, a student. And young people do make mistakes like the ones she makes in the films. Yes, I felt she was a real character.

In all fairness, I am not used to the exagerated style of her acting. I much more related to the fast talking Lana Turner or Paulette Goddard. But that's because they are very American and so am I: I like fast-talking broads. However, Rainer's romantic quality is rooted in her unknowable otherworldliness and I love her for that. I was swept off my feet into her idealistic heart. She took me there. Exactly like how I felt when I watched Audrey Hepburn in Sabrina. Pure fantasy, and I love this film because of that.

Not to sound elitist but a true gem for any closet sophisticate and old-school romantic.

21 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Dramatic School (1938) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: