Thursday, August 23, 2018

Tonight's Movie: Brides Are Like That (1936)

Earlier this week Turner Classic Movies paid tribute to actress Anita Louise during its annual Summer Under the Stars festival.

I participated in the Louise celebration by watching a recording I'd previously made of BRIDES ARE LIKE THAT (1936). BRIDES ARE LIKE THAT is a Warner Bros. "B" film which interested me chiefly due to the presence of its leading lady; I was also a bit intrigued by the whimsical title. Not too surprisingly, Anita Louise ended up being the chief reason anyone should watch this brief bit of fluff.

Louise plays Hazel, who's in love with Bill (Ross Alexander). Bill, unfortunately, can't hold down a job, to the despair of his wealthy Uncle Fred (Joseph Cawthorn), who threatens to disown him.

As the movie begins, Bill is dismayed to learn that Hazel has just become engaged to steady, reliable Dr. Randolph Jenkins (Dick Purcell, billed here as Richard). Unfortunately "Doc," as Bill calls him, is also a stuffy bore, and it's clear he and Hazel are not destined to live happily ever after.

Bill eventually wins Hazel away from Doc, but financial challenges continue for the couple due to Bill's irresponsibility.

Louise is lovely and sweet, and fortunately she's on screen for most of the 67-minute movie. A Thanksgiving dance sequence is particularly fun due to her pretty costuming.

Unfortunately Alexander, reviewed earlier this year in HERE COMES CARTER (1936), has a grating screen presence, and combined with his shiftless character he's completely exasperating. His professions of love come off as a used car salesman's pitch, although Louise sells being blissfully happy with him.

All in all, it's not a film I'll long remember, but despite my annoyance with the leading man I found it a pleasant hour thanks to Anita Louise and a lively, fast-moving story.

Gene and Kathleen Lockhart play Hazel's parents. The cast also includes Mary Treen, Joseph Crehan, Milton Kibbee, and Robert Emmmett Keane.

BRIDES ARE LIKE THAT was directed by William C. McGann and filmed by Sid Hickox. The screenplay by Ben Markson was based on the play APPLESAUCE (1925) by Barry Conners.

The movie was remade as ALWAYS A BRIDE (1940), starring George Reeves and Rosemary Lane. I happen to have a copy and need to pull it out for a look!

This film isn't available on DVD or VHS, but it's shown from time to time on Turner Classic Movies. The trailer is on the TCM website.


Blogger Brittaney said...

I recently watched my first Anita Louise film, the Go-Getter with George Brent. I was pleasantly surprised by the film and by her.

10:11 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

That's great, Brittaney! I liked her in that one a lot too. She was in many good movies yet today isn't well known outside classic film fan circles.

For more Anita Louise, I also recommend John Ford's JUDGE PRIEST (1934); A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM (1935), in which she is Titania, Queen of the Fairies; and the lovely Technicolor THE BANDIT OF SHERWOOD FOREST (1946) as a nice starter set.

Best wishes,

1:09 PM  

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