Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Two married couples, Tom & Eve Martin and Tubby & Sally Smith, are enjoying an evening together at the Martin's Hollywood home. Eve made Tom promise that they’d make a short night of it as she seems ready for some bedroom time with him, but Tom and Tubby have something else in mind: meeting and greeting a couple of would-be starlets whom they have in mind for a movie they’re backing. When the guys say they have to head to the studio for some unfinished work, the gals decide to hoof it to Mexico for a little vacation. After they leave, Tom and Tubby invite the starlets over for a late-night swim, but of course, the wives return and catch them. Thanks to a silly plot point (the men have been advised to put all their money and property in their wives' names so they won't lose everything if the movie flops), the wives head to Mexico prepared to gamble everything away. The men follow, hoping to make amends, but the starlets also follow. Complicating things, a couple of gigolos posing as Spanish waiters flirt with the wives. Naturally, this being a comedy, things work out in the end.

This mild pre-Code romantic farce is watchable but never rises above that. Charlotte Greenwood (Sally), known for her long legs and crazy kicks, is usually someone I like, but here her character is such a braying bitch that I was tired of her in the first 20 minutes. Lelia Hyams (Eve) and Harry Stubbs (Tubby) are lackluster but acceptable. I enjoyed seeing Reginald Denny (pictured), usually given comic relief sidekick parts, getting a starring role as Tom and doing well with it—of the four leads, he's the only one who really seemed at all sympathetic. Cliff Edwards gets a few good moments in as one of the gigolos (he's supposed to be a college student, but looks every bit his 35 years of age); Kane Richmond is younger and better looking as his buddy, a football star, but doesn't get to do much. Greenwood and Edwards sing a cute number, "Just Like Frankie and Johnny." Apparently, some of the exteriors were shot at the homes of Denny, Buster Keaton, and John Gilbert. [TCM]

No comments: