7.7/10
2,650
38 user 16 critic

Easy Living (1937)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 16 July 1937 (USA)
During the Great Depression, a wealthy banker throws away his wife's expensive fur coat; it lands on the head of a stenographer, leading to everyone assuming she is his mistress and has access to his millions.

Director:

Mitchell Leisen

Writers:

Preston Sturges (screenplay), Vera Caspary (based on a story by)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jean Arthur ... Mary Smith
Edward Arnold ... J.B. Ball
Ray Milland ... John Ball Jr.
Luis Alberni ... Mr. Louis Louis
Mary Nash ... Mrs. Ball
Franklin Pangborn ... Van Buren
Barlowe Borland ... Mr. Gurney
William Demarest ... Wallace Whistling
Andrew Tombes ... E.J. Hulgar
Esther Dale ... Lillian
Harlan Briggs ... Office Manager
William B. Davidson ... Mr. Hyde
Nora Cecil ... Miss Swerf
Robert Greig ... Butler
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Storyline

J.B. Ball, a rich financier, gets fed up with his free-spending family. He takes his wife's just-bought (very expensive) sable coat and throws it off the roof, it lands on poor hard-working girl Mary Smith. But it isn't so easy to just give away something so valuable, as he soon learns. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

f rated | hat | gift | sable | automat | See All (36) »

Taglines:

The daffiest screen comedy of all times! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 July 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mein Leben in Luxus See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

It was reported (on American Movie Classics rotation of classic movies, back when they showed uninterrupted classic films) that all of the furs and jewelry used in this film were real and that guards were posted during shooting to ensure that none of the valuables disappeared. See more »

Goofs

During automat free-for-fall, one of the customers drops a tray full of dishes which are clearly attached to the tray and don't even move when tray hits the floor. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Louis Louis: [points to icebox] Gasbox.
Mary Smith: What?
Mr. Louis Louis: They tell me it works with gas, but I don't believe it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown over a lady applying jewelry, stockings, and perfume. See more »


Soundtracks

Easy Living
(uncredited)
Music by Ralph Rainger
Lyrics by Leo Robin
[main theme of score but not sung]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sentiment plus Sophistication
11 January 1999 | by StrackeSee all my reviews

One of the best film moments of the 1930s occurs just after the beginning of the film when wealthy J. B. Ball, exasperated by his spoiled family's spending habits, tosses the wife's new sable coat from a window high in their 5th Avenue mansion. As if with a mind set on its own destiny, the falling coat spreads out on the air and lands like an enchanted parachute on the head of the Mary Smith, the working girl who will be our main character (Jean Arthur), and who is riding on the upper deck of a double-decker bus. What is a double-decker doing in New York City? No one asks; the coat just does its magic and the enchanted plot is underway. Best of all, screenwriter Sturges balances the magic and sentimentality with his usual crisp, witty, no-nonsense approach to dialogue and character. This "yin / yang" harmony is similar to what he achieved in directing "Sullivan's Travels."


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