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Platinum Blonde (1931)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 31 October 1931 (USA)
A young woman from a very rich family impulsively marries a reporter, but each assumes the other is the one whose lifestyle must change.

Director:

Frank Capra (as Frank R. Capra)

Writers:

Harry Chandlee (story) (as Harry E. Chandlee), Douglas W. Churchill (story) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Loretta Young ... Gallagher
Robert Williams ... Stew Smith
Jean Harlow ... Ann Schuyler
Halliwell Hobbes ... Butler
Reginald Owen ... Grayson
Edmund Breese ... Conroy - the Editor
Don Dillaway ... Michael Schuyler (as Donald Dillaway)
Walter Catlett ... Bingy
Claud Allister ... Dawson - the Valet (as Claude Allister)
Louise Closser Hale ... Mrs. Schuyler
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Storyline

Reporter Gallagher loves reporter Smith who marries Anne. He's soon bored being married to a socialite and asks Gallagher to help him write a play. She arrives with a bunch of reporters and the mansion turns into a party. Anne arrives and orders them out and Smith goes with them. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

She Was Gorgeous - He Was A Man . . . So, the other girl had to wait !

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 October 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gallagher See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£600,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The opening cast credits list ten names, while the end credits lists only seven of the ten, with character names. Hence the opening credits are used in the IMDb cast list. See more »

Goofs

The spelling of "OK" was not standardized for a long time. Dashiell Hammett among others spelled it "okeh" and "oke." See more »

Quotes

Stew Smith: My name's Smith, Stewart Smith. No relation to John, Joe, Trade, or Mark.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Frank Capra's American Dream (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Manhattan
(uncredited)
Music by Richard Rodgers
Played over main titles
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A sweet, funny, and even honest comedy...
24 November 2010 | by secondtakeSee all my reviews

Platinum Blonde (1931)

A pre-code romantic comedy with the deliberately ditzy Jean Harlow playing a rich girl and more classy Loretta Young playing the girl who lost her guy to Harlow. Both are sharp, convincing, and well cast. The leading man is a slightly affected, overacting, but charming Robert Williams, a type I associate with the early 1930s (a similar character was Lee Tracy who plays the movie agent in the 1932 "Dinner at Eight").

The director is none other than Frank Capra, who has yet to make his stellar films (including the 1934 breakout, "It Happened One Night"). But you can feel his tendencies at work, including a couple who love each other in an ordinary way but who have things come between them. This is part of the formula for what would be called screwball comedy, but "Platinum Blonde" isn't zany enough for that, and in fact it might be part of its problem historically. What makes it take off is Harlow and Williams being both willing to make their romance real, from joking to kissing to just hanging out in a normal way.

And the other thing that works is that it's just plain funny. Williams has an easy way of taking an off kilter world in stride which is great. And things do go wrong in the most charming ways sometimes. It isn't overly clever or original, but it's natural enough even old gags are legit. The central gag gets played out in the usual ways--a man in love with girls from two different social classes (a real Depression theme) has to figure out what to do. It would help that he notices he's actually still in love with the Loretta Young character.


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