Returning from a year up the Amazon studying snakes, the rich but unsophisticated Charles Pike meets con-artist Jean Harrington on a ship. They fall in love, but a misunderstanding causes them to split on bad terms. To get back at him, Jean disguises herself as an English lady, and comes back to tease and torment him. Written by
John Oswalt <email@example.com>
This is an interesting combination of talents and material that works very well, thanks most of all to Preston Sturges's ability to create a distinctive feel to his pictures. "The Lady Eve" has many of the elements familiar to screwball comedy, and yet it is something a little different, a little more than the oddball characters and comical plot developments.
Barbara Stanwyck has quite an interesting role that allows her at times to assume several different personas. She shows good versatility, and effectively brings out the different sides of her character's nature. Henry Fonda works better than you would expect in such a comic picture. He is wisely used as a straight man most of the time, and even his occasional stiffness actually fits the role.
Much of the supporting cast gets only limited opportunities, but they are generally good also, especially Charles Coburn, who is perfectly cast as Stanwyck's shifty father.
There are many amusing moments, yet often with a current of humanity underneath. Sturges and the cast keep the laughs coming while also making sure that you care about the characters.
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