6.6/10
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Ex-Lady (1933)

Unrated | | Comedy, Drama | 15 May 1933 (USA)
Although free spirit Helen Bauer does not believe in marriage, she consents to marry Don, but his infidelities cause her to also take on a lover.

Director:

Robert Florey

Writers:

David Boehm (screen play), Edith Fitzgerald (story) | 1 more credit »
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Airs Thu. Oct. 03, 5:15 AM on TCM

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Helen Bauer
Gene Raymond ... Don Peterson
Frank McHugh ... Hugo Van Hugh
Monroe Owsley ... Nick Malvyn
Claire Dodd ... Iris Van Hugh
Kay Strozzi ... Peggy Smith
Ferdinand Gottschalk ... Mr. Herbert Smith
Alphonse Ethier ... Mr. Adolphe Bauer - Helen's Father
Bodil Rosing ... Mrs. Bauer - Helen's Mother
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Storyline

Commercial artist Helen Bauer believes marriage kills romance. She lives with advertising writer Don Peterson. He convinces her to marry him. He later carries on with client Peggy Smith; Helen takes up with Don's competitor Nick Malvyn. In the end, the couple agree to give marriage another chance. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

We don't dare tell you how daring it is! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 May 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Intrusa See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$93,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

In 1962, producer-director Robert Aldrich was preparing the prologue to What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) He chose a scene from Parachute Jumper (1933) and this film to document the fact that the young Jane was a flop as a movie star. See more »

Goofs

In the last scene, when Don speaks his final line to Helen, his lips do not move. The audio was obviously added after filming ended. See more »

Quotes

Hugo Van Hugh: Love, and life, and laughter!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Stardust: The Bette Davis Story (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

I Got Myself in Bad (Being Too Good to You)
(uncredited)
Music by Sammy Fain
See more »

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User Reviews

 
pre-code early Bette programmer
7 May 2006 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Well, well, imagine my surprise when I saw two people in a double bed. That's right - precode, no whitewash. Bette Davis and Gene Raymond star in "Ex-Lady," about talented illustrator Helen Bauer, a career girl with very definite ideas about marriage - she's against it. Don (Raymond) has a key to her apartment, but he finally talks her into marriage. After a wonderful Havana honeymoon, the two return to find his ad agency, at which she now works, is in shambles. The two seem to grow unhappier until they decide it's just not working. But while separated, he and Helen find that the emotions they thought they left behind in marriage are still very much present.

I wasn't as enthusiastic about "Ex-Lady" as some of the other posters. It's slow-moving and stagy. It's based on an unproduced play, and it's not hard to see why it wasn't produced. Still, it's fascinating - Davis is all of about 28, tiny and pretty, and her screen persona is as yet unset. The feminist premise is very interesting, as are all of the precode elements. Davis and Raymond display quite a bit of chemistry, and talk about not having your screen persona - Frank McHugh wanders around as if he's on another planet! There's also a rendition of a cut version of Wagner's "Dich, teure Halle" at a party.

Davis does fine in her role, but of course, this isn't the type of thing she would shine in once Warners caught on. Raymond has never impressed me much, but if Jeannette MacDonald was forced to marry him, apparently he impressed Louis B. Mayer.

All in all, "Ex-Lady" is worth seeing for early Davis and as a pre-code film, which makes some of the movie seem quite modern.


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