During WWI Bill Pettigrew, a naive young Texan soldier is sent to New York for basic training. He meets worldly wise actress Daisy Heath when her car nearly runs him over. Daisy agrees to ... See full summary »
The saga of Tom Holmes - a man of principles - from the Great War to the Great Depression. Will he ever get a break? His war heroics earn fame and a medal for someone else, and his wounds ... See full summary »
William A. Wellman
Young lawyer meets and marries girl after knowing her one day. Takes bride home to meet his mother who disapproves of the marriage. Lawyer thinks everything will be fine as he moves up the ... See full summary »
Indecisive heiress Dee Dee Dillwood is pushed into marrying her sixth fiancée, but unable to face the wedding night, she flees into the adjacent hotel room of commercial pilot Marvin Payne,... See full summary »
Discovery by Flo Ziegfeld changes a girl's life but not necessarily for the better, as three beautiful women find out when they join the spectacle on Broadway: Susan, the singer who must ... See full summary »
Jimmy, the owner of a failed music shop, goes to work with his uncle, the owner of a food factory. Before he gets there, he befriends an Irish family who happens to be his uncle's worst ... See full summary »
Englishman and family black sheep travels the world working odd jobs while dreaming of being a playwright. He meets an admiral's daughter and they fall in love, but he's poor and she's ... See full summary »
Robert Z. Leonard
Playwright Gaylord Esterbrook scores a hit with his first Broadway play, both with the critics and with leading lady Linda Paige. He and Linda are happily married until a patroness of the ... See full summary »
During WWI Bill Pettigrew, a naive young Texan soldier is sent to New York for basic training. He meets worldly wise actress Daisy Heath when her car nearly runs him over. Daisy agrees to pretend to be Bill's girl to impress his friends, but then a real romance begins. Written by
Col Needham <email@example.com>
Shopworn plot gets a lift from three charming leads...
There's no doubt that THE SHOPWORN ANGEL uses a plot that has been used countless times in movies and books over the years. It's the story of a selfish actress (MARGARET SULLAVAN) suddenly succumbing to the country boy charm of a soldier (JAMES STEWART) who is about to be sent overseas in WWII. Meanwhile, she has her agent WALTER PIDGEON, whom she depends upon for emotional support and love. Surely, there is nothing new about the bare outline of the plot.
But what works in the story's favor is the simplicity and charm of the three leads. Sullavan is more radiant than usual as a glamorous actress rather than the drab little wren she usually played and she plays her part in a refreshing manner that is almost able to overcome the idea that she should suddenly turn so noble. Despite this flaw in the characterization, it's a very winning performance that she gives.
Likewise, JAMES STEWART does wonders with a thinly devised role of the country bumpkin who falls impetuously in love with an actress, even to the point of asking her to marry him before he goes overseas. At this point, the plot's outcome becomes telegraphed because we know this is a Margaret Sullavan film and tearful romantic dramas have been her specialty. Thus, the ending becomes a forgone conclusion.
WALTER PIDGEON is her kindly suitor who has the wisdom to make the best of a situation he's not exactly comfortable with. He anchors the story with his sensitive performance as the man who can always be depended on to give the heroine the emotional support she needs. He's also got an abundant sense of humor that the story needs.
It's a trifle of a film, but beautifully acted and given a lift by the winsome performances of its three leads, moving at a brisk pace to the Hollywood ending. HATTIE McDANIEL is her usual delightful self as Miss Sullvan's down-to-earth maid.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?