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Circa 1861, Angelina, ruling countess of an Italian principality, is at a loss when invaded by a Hungarian army. Her lookalike ancestress Francesca, who saved a similar situation 300 years before, comes to life from a portrait to help her descendant. Complicating factor: the newlywed countess feels strangely drawn to the handsome invader... Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
THE LADY IN ERMINE certainly has its moments, but it can't decide if it wants to be a romance or a comedy. Parts of it are very funny indeed and had me laughing out loud, while others seem to fall as flat as a lead balloon.
Douglas Fairbanks Jr. is handsome and dashing, as usual, providing a much needed surge of energy when he is on screen, but Betty Grable seems uncomfortable in her double role. She's far more enjoyable to watch as the ancestor than she is as the descendant. The opportunity for her to display her most valuable assets (her legs) is limited.
20th Century Fox has surrounded the two leads with good character actors from its stable, including Cesar Romero showing some versatility, Walter Abel in two roles, and Harry Davenport as the likable old retainer. Reginald Gardiner is wasted as Alberto.
It's a shame that the songs are so ordinary and mostly forgettable. Was this the best Fox, the studio that brought us STATE FAIR, could do? All in all, you're not missing much if you don't see it, but it's a pleasantly diverting way to pass an hour and thirty minutes.
7 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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