Tuesday, April 08, 2014


Young Marie Thurber has been dating young Tommy Mills, and he plans to marry her whenever he sells some land that was left to him. Marie's folks like Tommy, but Marie has gotten tired of Tommy being such a goody-goody around them, with Tommy going so far as to choose to play bridge with the parents rather than go out on the town with her. Marie's uncle David, who lives with them, thinks more of young Bernie Norton as he's more of a go-getter—he has an orange and green car, after all! Things come to a head when Mr. Thurber tries to get his town's civic improvement association to buy some property from him. Problem #1: Tommy is making arrangements to sell his land to them first, not aware of Mr. Thurber's attempt. Problem #2: Uncle David actually prefers Tommy to Bernie but thinks that Tommy needs some more backbone, so he encourages Tommy to act sourly toward the Thurbers, assuming that will impress Marie. Problem #3: Bernie has already gotten a marriage license. After more complications and crossed signals, Marie eventually chooses Tommy, and both Tommy and Mr. Thurber get to sell their land.

This is a cute B-romantic comedy, though your enjoyment of it may depend on your tolerance for Arthur Lake (Tommy), known best as Dagwood Bumstead in the Blondie movie series of the 30s and 40s. Here, he's a lanky juvenile who bounces between cocky and mild-mannered. IMDb reviewers tend to find him irritating but I thought he was fine—certainly no more bothersome than the average comic juvenile. Sue Carol, who made only a few more movies before retiring from the screen in 1937 (and who later married Alan Ladd), is charming as Marie. The only other actor to stand out is William Collier Sr. as Uncle David. There a number of fun scenes: in one, Mr. Thurber and Uncle David argue over Tommy and Bernie; in another, Tommy tries his best to be rude to the Thurbers. The final scene, played in pouring rain (see picture), has the drunken Tommy sneaking into the Thurber house through a window to tell off Marie—which, of course, leads to their reconciliation. A cute movie considering its age and its static, stagy style. [TCM]

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