6.5/10
978
19 user 15 critic

Bad Girl (1931)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 13 September 1931 (USA)
A man and woman, skeptical about romance, nonetheless fall in love and are wed, but their lack of confidence in the opposite sex haunts their marriage.

Director:

Frank Borzage

Writers:

Viña Delmar (novel), Brian Marlow (play)
Reviews
Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
James Dunn ... Eddie Collins
Sally Eilers ... Dorothy Haley
Minna Gombell ... Edna Driggs
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Storyline

A mug and a jane: Dorothy knows that every guy is going to make a pass at her; Eddie knows that every gal wastes her money on good times. He's saving to open a repair shop. When the two of them meet, they can't believe they get along. One evening he leaves her waiting in the rain; she finds his apartment and reads him the riot act. They end up spooning and napping until 4 AM. She's afraid of her brother, who's her guardian, so Eddie figures she should tell her brother that she's getting married the next morning. Dorothy tries out the story but knows Eddie won't show up. It's the first of a series of promises, fears, miscalculations, and hard knocks. Where will they end up? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

VINA DELMAR'S novel of New York Life - BAD GIRL See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 September 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Barn av idag See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fox Film Corporation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original Broadway production of "Bad Girl" by Brian Marlow and Viña Delmar opened at the Hudson Theater on October 2, 1930 and ran for 85 performances. The cast were lead by Paul Kelly as Eddie, Sylvia Sidney as Dorothy and Charlotte Wynters as Edna, as well as Sascha Beaumont, Angela Jacobs, Grace Morse, William Pawley and Walter Vaughn. See more »

Goofs

At 39:38, shadow of boom mic drifts across the wall. See more »

Quotes

Eddie Collins: I'd like to be nice to women. You know, say nice things to them, like fellas can. I can't though. I think of nice things to say, but when it comes to puttin' them into words, I only say something sarcastic and mean.
See more »

Connections

Version of Manhattan Heartbeat (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Wedding March
(uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Music by Richard Wagner
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Marriage Depression Style
7 October 2019 | by evanston_dadSee all my reviews

A man and woman get married, she gets pregnant, and then the two of them spend the rest of the movie wondering if the other really wants to have a baby. They could just talk to each other about it I suppose, but then there wouldn't be a reason for this film's existence.

"Bad Girl" is a bit of a curio in that it won Oscars for Best Director (Frank Borzage) and Best Writing (Adaptation) at the 1931-32 Academy Awards, but who's even heard of this movie now? It's not very memorable, and it's a testament to the power of the Academy Awards, whether or not you personally give them any credence, that films like this are kept afloat in front of modern-day audiences based on the fact that they won some Oscars back in the day. That's certainly the motive for my seeking it out, whereas any number of other early talkies that are no better or worse than this one fade into obscurity.

James Dunn and Sally Eilers are pretty good, and talkies were still new enough that it's refreshing to find actors who knew how to act with sound as their medium. It's also fun to see movies from this time period because they give us a glimpse into what life was like during the Great Depression.

Many comments have said that the title is completely irrelevant to anything that happens in the movie. That's not entirely true. When Dunn first meets Eilers at Coney Island, they have a conversation where he mentions something about how everyone has both bad and good in them, and the idea that both husband and wife suspect the "bad" in each other drives much of their behavior throughout the rest of the film. But I do agree that the theme isn't explored very fully, and it is a misleading title.

In addition to the two Oscars it won, "Bad Girl" was nominated for Best Picture.

Grade: B


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