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Let Us Be Gay (1930)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama | 9 August 1930 (USA)
Dowdy housewife Kitty dotes on her self-centered husband but divorces him when his mistress shows up at their home one day to break up their marriage. Bob had become bored with her ... See full summary »


Robert Z. Leonard (uncredited)


Rachel Crothers (from the play by), Frances Marion (continuity and dialogue) | 1 more credit »

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Complete credited cast:
Norma Shearer ... Kitty Brown
Rod La Rocque ... Bob Brown (as Rod LaRocque)
Marie Dressler ... Mrs. Bouccicault
Gilbert Emery ... Townley
Hedda Hopper ... Madge Livingston
Raymond Hackett ... Bruce Keene
Sally Eilers ... Diane
Tyrell Davis ... Wallace Granger (as Tyrrell Davis)
Wilfred Noy Wilfred Noy ... Whitman - 1st Butler
William H. O'Brien ... Struthers - 2nd Butler (as William O'Brien)
Sybil Grove Sybil Grove ... Perkins - the Maid


Dowdy housewife Kitty dotes on her self-centered husband but divorces him when his mistress shows up at their home one day to break up their marriage. Bob had become bored with her lackluster appearance, their children and himself. Kitty re-invents herself and becomes a Continental favorite, dressing like a fashion model and behaving gaily. Three years after their divorce, Bob is at the home of a wealthy matron romancing her soon-to-be-married granddaughter, when the matron invites Kitty to a weekend party to steal Bob away from the granddaughter. When Kitty and Bob see each other, neither lets on they have a past, and the party continues as Bob pursues his ex-wife and new conquest equally. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A complete lesson in "How to Vamp Your Husband." A great cast! A swell show! (Print Ad- Sarasota Herald,((Sarasota, Fla.)) 8 September 1930) See more »


Comedy | Drama


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

9 August 1930 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gozemos a Vida See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The play on which this film is based opened on Broadway at the Little Theatre, 240 W. 44th St., on February 19, 1929 and ran for 353 performances until December, 1929. See more »


Near the end of the film, just after the children depart with Boucci and their nurse, a shadow of the boom microphone falls across a column to the right of the scene. See more »


Mrs. Bouccicault: Tommy, this is Mrs. Cortland Brown. She's not as sweet as she looks. But, you'll think she is.
See more »


Referenced in Our Blushing Brides (1930) See more »


A La La La Paree
Composer unknown
Played on piano by Norma Shearer
Sung by Norma Shearer, Gilbert Emery, Raymond Hackett and Tyrell Davis
See more »

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User Reviews

Female Stars Loom Large In Small Comedy
13 December 2001 | by Ron OliverSee all my reviews

A rich old lady calls on a flirtatious divorcée to woo a Lothario away from her silly soon-to-be-married granddaughter.

LET US BE GAY is an interesting little domestic comedy which features some tart dialogue (courtesy of celebrated screenwriter Frances Marion) & good performances. While perhaps a bit mawkish at times, this can probably be blamed on the difficulties with early sound technology which tended to limit action & movement.

Norma Shearer can be credited with appearing in this minor film, rather than using her undoubted clout as Irving Thalberg's spouse to insist upon only A-grade pictures. She is especially effective in her first few scenes, where dowdy flat makeup makes her almost unrecognizable. Her extreme transmogrification from goose to swan could only happen in Hollywood, but it's scarcely profitable to spend much time worrying about that.

Rod LaRocque doesn't come off too well as Shearer's adulterous husband. Quite popular during Silent days, the talkies were not especially kind to him and his career would suffer. Here his role is not in the least sympathetic and one has to wonder what masochistic impulse moves women to desire the cad so much.

Magnificent Marie Dressler is on hand as an eccentric Long Island dowager. As a great friend of Frances Marion, one can easily imagine that the part was written expressly for her. Full of cranks & crotchets, she is very humorous. However, the tremendous warmth & essential goodness which would very shortly make her Hollywood's biggest star are largely missing.

Among the supporting cast, Hedda Hopper scores as a slinky society serpent, as does Wilfred Noy playing a comic butler. Movie mavens will spot little Dickie Moore as Shearer's young son & elderly Mary Gordon as her housekeeper, both uncredited.

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