Circa 1861, Angelina, ruling countess of an Italian principality, is at a loss when invaded by a Hungarian army. Her lookalike ancestress Francesca, who saved a similar situation 300 years ... See full summary »
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
Andre and Colette Bertier are happily married. When Colette introduces her husband to her flirtatious best friend, Mitzi, he does his best to resist her advances. But she is persistent, and very cute, and he succumbs. Mitzi's husband wants to divorce her, and has been having her tailed. Andre gets caught, and must confess to his wife. But Colette has had problems resisting the attentions of another man herself, and they forgive each other.Written by
John Oswalt <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Director Ernst Lubitsch made some marvelous films during the 1930s. Because they were so deftly created and the films seemed so magical and perfect, many have dubbed these films as having "the Lubitsch touch". Well, ONE HOUR WITH YOU does have many of these touches, but to me it just didn't have the magic that his best films, such as TROUBLE IN PARADISE, had--though it is still a very good film.
The film begins with a deliriously happy married couple, Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald. They defy the stereotype that married people are dull and their love wanes--that is, until MacDonald's best friend, Mitzi (Genevieve Tobin), arrives. Mitzi is man-crazy and again and again Jeanette foolishly forces her husband to be with Mitzi alone. Eventually, he succumbs to her horny overtures--though the film seems to imply they didn't go very far. In retaliation, Jeanette grabs the first pipsqueak she can find (Charlie Ruggles) and sows a few (a very few) oats of her own. Can this couple survive? Will they live happily ever after? Sure, you betcha.
This film is a musical. While none of the numbers are especially memorable and occasionally Ms. MacDonald hit some notes that made my skin crawl, the songs were very good--very light and simple with excellent lyrics. In addition, at times the dialog was spoken in rhyme--though this confused me. At times, they rhymed beautifully (almost like a Dr. Seuss book) but then the dialog became much more normal. Later, they started rhyming again. I think they should have either stuck with this or dropped it altogether. As it was, it just seemed like they lost interest in this and forgot to keep rhyming. One thing I really did like, though, was how Chevalier occasionally broke character and spoke to the camera--like he was having a dialog with the audience. This was clever and the film had enough good moments to recommend it, but still it doesn't rank among the director's very best.
By the way, I saw this on DVD but was saddened to see it only had the American version. According to IMDb both MacDonald and Chevalier also filmed a French version at the same time, as Ms. MacDonald was apparently fluent in French!
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