Friday, March 19, 2010


This romantic comedy may have been inspired by the Gold Digger films, and its plot was certainly recycled later in other Fox movies (MOON OVER MIAMI, THREE COINS IN THE FOUNTAIN and HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE). Three working women share a fancy apartment in Budapest (though they can't quite afford to get it furnished properly) and set out to find romance. Constance Bennett works as a model; she has some money, pays half the rent, and has a long-term arrangement with the slightly older Paul Lukas. This is complicated when a very young girl (Simone Simon) who calls herself a "cousin" even though she is just a family acquaintance, comes barging in on Lukas, flirting like crazy and demanding a place to stay; of course, her not-so-hidden gold digging agenda is to replace Bennett. Actress Loretta Young falls for a dashing count (Tyrone Power, pictured) who takes their relationship less seriously than she does, especially as it turns out that he is already engaged. Janet Gaynor, who works odd jobs, is sweet on young doctor Don Ameche, who is too preoccupied with his work to notice her--one of her jobs is feeding the rabbits he uses in his research--but eventually she takes a job as valet for a somewhat over-the-hill stage magician (Alan Mowbray) and as they say, complications ensue, including a suicide attempt. The movie works fine for 45 minutes as it sets its narratives in motion, but then it slows down and stays slow until the end. I do like the fact that only one of the three storylines (Gaynor's) ends predictably. Bennett and Gaynor got on my nerves with their mannered performances, and Ameche hadn't quite hit his stride yet, but Young is good, as are Lukas and Power (in a relatively small role--and he's credited as Tyrone Power Jr.). Monty Woolley, in his first movie, can be spotted basically as an extra in a theater scene. [FMC]

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