5.9/10
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14 user 15 critic

Magnificent Doll (1946)

Not Rated | | Drama, History | November 1946 (USA)
Ginger Rogers is the daughter of boardinghouse owners in Washington, DC who falls in love with Aaron Burr and James Madison.

Director:

Frank Borzage

Writer:

Irving Stone (original story and screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ginger Rogers ... Dolly Payne Madison
David Niven ... Aaron Burr
Burgess Meredith ... James Madison
Peggy Wood ... Mrs. Payne
Stephen McNally ... John Todd (as Horace McNally)
Robert Barrat ... Mr. Payne
Grandon Rhodes ... Thomas Jefferson
Frances E. Williams Frances E. Williams ... Amy (as Frances Williams)
Henri Letondal Henri Letondal ... Count D'Arignon
Joseph Forte Joseph Forte ... Senator Ainsworth (as Joe Forte)
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Storyline

Dolly Payne is adored by two leaders of the fledgling American government, James Madison and Aaron Burr. She plays each against the other, not only for romantic reasons, but also to influence the shaping of the young country. By manipulating Burr's affections, she helps Thomas Jefferson win the presidency, and eventually she becomes First Lady of the land herself. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Most Whispered About Woman! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

November 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Frank Borzage's Magnificent Doll See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hallmark Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Of all the post-Fred Astaire movies of Ginger Rogers to this point, this historical drama was her least successful both financially and critically. According to the June 23, 1947 edition of TIME magazine the picture had "trouble getting into some first-run theaters." Moreover, film reviewers largely felt that Ginger had been miscast. To quote film historian Hal Erickson, writing for All Movie Guide, "The usually ebullient Rogers seems encased in wax as Dolly Madison, the first lady of the United States in the early 19th century." See more »

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User Reviews

 
The lady deserves better than this.
14 April 2018 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Dolly Madison is a truly fascinating character from American history. Unfortunately, while "Magnificent Doll" does center on her life, it also is filled with historical inaccuracies...enough so that it's not a particularly good history or civics lesson. The biggest problem is that romance between Madison (Ginger Rogers) and Aaron Burr (David Niven) as I could find no indication that they ever dated or had any sort of relationship apart from taking a room at her mother's rooming house. There also is no mention of a child from her first marriage...one that did NOT die from Yellow Fever. And, sadly, what we know Dolly DID do was generally omitted or given only brief mention.

Apart from the inaccuracies, the film is a mildly entertaining but occasionally stuffy film. In particular, the latter portion of the movie seems to go off the rails...and boredom set in as I watched. Not terrible...but Dolly sure deserves better than this tepid plot.


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