Managed Money (1934)

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Reviews: 9 user | 1 critic

Young Mary Lou tries to help her brother Sonny raise money so that he can attend a military academy.



(dialogue), (story), 2 more credits »
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Credited cast:
Frank Coghlan Jr. ...
Sonny Rogers (as Junior Coghlan)
Harry Myers ...
Huntley Gordon ...
Police Officer
Virginia True Boardman ...
Helene Chadwick ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sidney Miller ...
Sidney - Sonny's friend


When Sonny finds out that his friend Sid is planning to go to a military academy, he wants to go there as well. When Sonny's father reluctantly tells him that it would be impossible for him to pay for it, Sonny and Sid decide to go prospecting for gold in the hope of raising the money. They throw together some equipment and head out into the desert, where they discover that Sonny's young sister Mary Lou, determined to join them, has stowed away. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Short





Release Date:

23 February 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Frolics of Youth (#4): Managed Money  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


[first lines]
Mary Lou Rogers: What makes you do that Sonny?
Sonny Rogers: Mary Lou, I can't make the stirring if you keep cutting in.
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User Reviews

Yoo-hoo! Yoo-hoo!
17 January 2005 | by (Luoyang, China) – See all my reviews

Shirley Temple once again takes on the role of Mary Lou Rogers, co-starring with her irritating brother Sonny, who is just as contrived and unconvincing as he was in the same role in Pardon My Pups, as I imagine he is in most of the other short films that he stars in with Temple playing Mary Lou.

It seems that Sonny's childhood friend is going to be attending what is evidently a very coveted military academy, and after briefly celebrating, Sonny becomes sad, knowing that his own parents can't afford to send him to the same school, and that the news means that he'll be losing his best friend.

What follows is a film during which the two boys constantly act just an unrealistically as the Hardy Boys who, when faced with things like the sounds of ghosts in creepy mansions, are famous for uttering such things as "I don't feel obliged to remain in this house one moment longer!" There are a series of meaningless sight gags thrown into the movie as the boys set out to search for gold in the desert of California, setting off on bumpy dirt roads in an old jalopy (which I suppose may have been brand new at the time) on the sides of which are such crudely scrawled handwritten phrases as "Chickens Ride Inside, Roosters Ride Out," and "No Good on Dirt Roads."

Shirley tags along, the curious little sister who wants to go hang out with the big kids, and ends up running into a strangely well-dressed but crazy man in the desert, who struggles to get her to ask him silly questions but fails because she already knows the answer. Turns out he is a man of some level of fame who has been suffering from amnesia, brought on by a cause which is never explained.

Not that it matters, his whole presence in the movie is never explained. My theory is that they just needed a reason to have a man diving into a mirage that is really just hot sand to add to the sight gag of the kids plowing a wooden shack to the ground because they thought it was a mirage, just like the cavernous mansion that disappeared before their eyes earlier.

Of the few of Shirley Temple's early short films that I've seen, I've found that the ones in which she plays Mary Lou, co-starring with Frank Coghlan Jr. as Sonny, are by far the least entertaining and amusing, and this one is no exception. Temple is just as charmingly adorable as she always is, but with that level of instant adoration, they could certainly do better than this. I think her cuteness worked against her in some ways, because she's been in many films which have little else to offer.

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