21 user 18 critic

Big Brown Eyes (1936)

Approved | | Comedy, Mystery, Romance | 3 April 1936 (USA)
Sassy manicurist Eve Fallon is recruited as an even more brassy reporter and she helps police detective boyfriend Danny Barr break a jewel theft ring and solve the murder of a baby.


Raoul Walsh


Raoul Walsh (screenplay), Bert Hanlon (screenplay) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview:
Cary Grant ... Danny Barr
Joan Bennett ... Eve Fallon
Walter Pidgeon ... Richard Morey
Lloyd Nolan ... Russ Cortig
Alan Baxter ... Cary Butler
Marjorie Gateson ... Mrs. Cole
Isabel Jewell ... Bessie Blair
Douglas Fowley ... Benny Battle
Henry Brandon ... Don Butler (as Henry Kleinbach)
Joe Sawyer ... Jack Sully
Dolores Casey ... Cashier
Doris Canfield ... Myrtle
Edwin Maxwell ... Editor


Dan Barr is a flatfoot on the trail of jewel robbers. Eve Fallon is his girl of 5 years. We meet them spitting and sparring, but never doubting they're in love. Eve is a manicurist, with an eye for news. Soon after we meet her, she's out of the beauty salon and into the news-room as an ace reporter. With Eve's help, Dan nabs one of the jewel gang members, Cortig, whose stray bullet killed a baby in the park. A spooked witness and a slick lawyer get Cortig off. Disgusted with the lack of justice, Dan quits the force to find his own justice. Eve, likewise, quits the paper and returns to her job as manicurist. While giving a manicure, Eve unwittingly discovers that a prominent local citizen is the jewel gang's leader. All the while, Dan is hot on the trail. Their trails merge and the case is solved. Written by Debbie Dunlap <dunlap@mail.tqci.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


New York's Most Dangerous Jewel-Thief Meets His Match! See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


One of over 700 Paramount productions, filmed between 1929-49, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. Its earliest documented telecast took place in Omaha Wednesday 4 March 1959 on KETV (Channel 7), followed by Phoenix 17 June 1959 on KVAR (Channel 12), by Milwaukee 24 October 1959 on WITI (Channel 6), by Grand Rapids 19 November 1959 on WOOD (Channel 8), by Detroit 8 January 1960 on WJBK (Channel 2), by Toledo 7 February 1960 on WTOL (Channel 11), by Miami 12 April 1960 on WTVJ (Channel 4), by Philadelphia 24 April 1960 on WCAU (Channel 10), by Johnstown 14 September 1960 on WJAC (Channel 6), by Cincinnati 27 September 1960 on WKRC (Channel 12), and by Chicago 7 December 1960 on WBBM (Channel 2). It was released on DVD 19 April 2016 as one of 18 titles in Universal's Cary Grant - the Vault Collection. See more »


Benny Battle: You got a kind face.
Police Desk Sergeant: Yes, you got a kind face too. It's the kind I don't like.
See more »


References She Done Him Wrong (1933) See more »

User Reviews

Grant Coming Into His Own
5 April 2017 | by Michael_ElliottSee all my reviews

Big Brown Eyes (1936)

*** (out of 4)

Detective Danny Barr (Cary Grant) is trying to track down some jewel thieves but one day he is given the grim news that a baby has been shot and killed in a park. He finds that the two crimes are connected but can't get any real clues until his girlfriend Eve (Joan Bennett) goes to work for a newspaper.

Yes, you heard the plot of BIG BROWN EYES correct. It's a movie that features a baby being shot and killed. That was a rather dark subject for any period of films but you have to wonder how that plot point got past the Hayes Office just a year after they were coming down on certain topics. Apparently a film with a baby being shot was okay as long as the male and female stars weren't kissing for over five seconds.

As far as the film goes, director and co-writer Raoul Walsh does a very good job at mixing several genres together and in the end they all work quite well. You've got the mystery of the jewel thieves and the baby murder. You've got the back and forth romance between Grant and Bennett. You've also got some comedy thrown in for good measure, although the killing of the baby is a tad bit dark for the rest of the picture. All of these elements work very well and it plays out quite nicely.

Grant was yet a major star but you can see the comic timing really starting to come out here. I've been going through his films in the order that he made them and this role was clearly one of the best of his early career. He got to play the tough cop and do it nicely but his comic and romantic timing is that classic Grant. Bennett is also very good in her supporting role and makes for some good charm and there's no question that the two leads have some nice chemistry. Walter Pidgeon, Lloyd Nolan and Joe Sawyer are also good in their supporting bits.

BIG BROWN EYES isn't all that well known, which is a tad bit shocking considering the cast, the director and the fact that it's a good movie. The film even has some fun with Grant having him play a ventriloquist. There's even more fun to be had when Bennett says a classic Mae West line to him.

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Release Date:

3 April 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Aquellos ojos morenos See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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