5.0/10
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30 user 9 critic

Laughing Sinners (1931)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 30 May 1931 (USA)
Cabaret performer Ivy Stevens in an affair with a low-rent traveling salesman is dumped in a 'Dear Jane' letter and finds solace in joining the Salvation Army.

Director:

Harry Beaumont

Writers:

Kenyon Nicholson (play), Bess Meredyth (continuity) | 1 more credit »
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Count Armalia believes that the luck of birth is all that separates the rich from the poor. To test his theory, he sends Anni, who is a singer in a dive, to a ritzy resort for two weeks. ... See full summary »

Director: Dorothy Arzner
Stars: Joan Crawford, Franchot Tone, Robert Young
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Joan Crawford ... Ivy Stevens
Neil Hamilton ... Howard 'Howdy' Palmer
Clark Gable ... Carl Loomis
Marjorie Rambeau ... Ruby
Guy Kibbee ... Cass Wheeler
Cliff Edwards ... Mike
Roscoe Karns ... Fred Geer
Gertrude Short ... Edna
George Cooper ... Joe
George F. Marion ... Humpty
Bert Woodruff ... Tink
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Storyline

Cafe entertainer Ivy Stevens falls for sleazy salesman Howard Palmer and jumps from a bridge when he dumps her. Saved by Salvation Army officer Carl, Ivy reforms and joins the Army. When she runs into Palmer she falls for him all over again. Carl beats up Palmer and gives a speech to Ivy which induces her to return to the Army and to Carl. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

30 May 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Complete Surrender See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$338,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Kenyon Nicholson's play, "Torch Song," opened on 27 August 1930 on Broadway in New York City. Guy Kibbee originated the role of Cass Wheeler in that production. See more »

Quotes

Howard 'Howdy' Palmer: [annoyed and impatiently waiting to get by a kissing Ivy and Howdy] Well, anytime you get through.
Ivy 'Bunny' Stevens: Mister, we never get through.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Fast Workers (1933) See more »

Soundtracks

Brighten the Corner Where You Are
(uncredited)
Music by Charles Gabriel
Words by Ina Duley Ogden
Sung by Joan Crawford and the Salvation Army members
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Our Boy Howdy
3 January 2014 | by utgard14See all my reviews

Oh, boy. Clark Gable in the Salvation Army. Where did they come up with this stuff? Nightclub performer Ivy Stevens (Joan Crawford) is despondent upon learning Howard "Howdy" Palmer (Neil Hamilton) has no intention of marrying her. She was just a booty call to our boy Howdy. How Neil Hamilton got so many roles in the early '30s as a ladies man type is beyond me but that's how it was then I guess. Anyway, Ivy decides to jump off a bridge but she is stopped by kindly and handsome Salvation Army worker Carl (a mustacheless Clark Gable). Ivy joins up with the Salvation Army too and is seemingly happy with her new lifestyle. But then one day Howdy spots her and, despite being married now, makes a move for her. Can Ivy resist Howdy's seductive ways? Can any woman?

There's a few things wrong with this movie. First, on no planet does Joan freaking Crawford, at this time a young and sexy dancer, get that upset over being dumped by Neil Hamilton. He was born looking like a banker. So that's unbelievable. Second and third things are that Clark Gable is no Salvation Army worker and he sure as hell isn't a guy named Carl! Joan's farmer dance is the highlight of the movie and probably her best dancing number from all of her early dancing movies. Overall it's a watchable but mostly forgettable melodrama about a "wrong" woman going right. Avid Crawford and Gable fans will like it most.


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