The Most Precious Thing in Life is a 1934 American film directed by Lambert Hillyer and starring Richard Cromwell, Jean Arthur, Donald Cook, Anita Louise, and Mary Forbes. The film tells a ...
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Carnie owner Buck Rankin marries local girl Helen and plans to go straight, but after a brawl ends up with a twenty-year sentence for manslaughter. When a pregnant Helen vows to wait for ... See full summary »
Non-citizen Arthur marries reporter Murphy for a bogus gangster's confession. A divorce is needed, and Murphy is fired. The gangster wants her to be his girlfriend, the police are outside, and only one who can save her is Murphy.
Erle C. Kenton
The Most Precious Thing in Life is a 1934 American film directed by Lambert Hillyer and starring Richard Cromwell, Jean Arthur, Donald Cook, Anita Louise, and Mary Forbes. The film tells a story about secret and selfless maternal devotion with elements of Madame X (1929) and Stella Dallas (1937). It is the third film of Jean Arthur with Columbia.
The old saying I wrote above is quite appropriate to "Most Precious Thing in Life". It's the story of Ellen (Jean Arthur) who marries a man she hardly dated and soon comes to realize he's a total wimp and his family is bent on controlling and, possibly, destroying the marriage. The big problem with this is that she's had a baby...and his rich family insists on keeping it and giving it all the benefits of wealth. Stupidly, she ultimately leaves and doesn't see the baby for many years. What follows is a story about love and sacrifice that is very reminiscent of pictures like "Madame X" and "Stella Dallas"...though I think they did this sort of thing a bit better.
Through much of the film, Jean is in old lady make-up. She looks pretty realistic and does a good job of it. The story is interesting, but also so full of ridiculous coincidences you can't help but not take it all that seriously as well. A good time-passer that could have been a bit better.
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