Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pre- Code: Strange Interlude(1932)

Strange Interlude(1932). Romantic drama. D: Robert Z. Leonard. Cast: Norma Shearer, Clark Gable, May Robson, Maureen O'Sullivan, Robert Young, Ralph Morgan, Henry B. Walthall and Mary Alden.

In a small New England town, shortly after the World War, writer Charlie Marsden returns home from Europe to visit the woman he is secretly in love with.  There he finds Nina Leeds, angry with her father for preventing Gordon from marrying her before he died in a plane crash during the war. Announcing, that she is going to move to Boston to work as a nurse in a sanitarium for wounded soldiers.

One year later, Nina is called home when her father becomes ill. By the time she arrives home with, Dr. Ned Darrell, and Sam Evans, her father has already died.

Later when, Nina confesses to Charlie that her obsession with Gordon has caused her to be promiscuous with men, Charlie, even though he wants to marry her, realizes that Nina needs a strong man, suggests that she should marry Sam. Wanting a normal married life, Nina agrees.

Nina, soon realizes her mistake, when Sam's mother confides in her that insanity runs in the family and they should not have any children. Mrs. Evans then tells Nina that Sam knows nothing about the "family curse" and suggests Nina, have children by another man.

Nina, soon regrets her marriage and when Ned visits, she tells him about the Evans curse and the two decide to conceive a child. During their afternoon together, Nina realizes that she loves Ned, but.. Ned is not ready to get married and to prevent Nina from telling Sam, Ned announces that Nina is pregnant and that he is leaving for Europe for a year. After Ned's leaves, Nina gives birth to a son, named Gordon.

Realizing that he made a mistake, Ned returns and begs her to run away with him but, Nina, realizing that Sam would be destroyed, tells him that she is happy with the way things are.

Ned and Charlie, become silent partners in Sam's business and Sam makes them all wealthy.

Later when Ned, Charlie, Nina and Sam come to watch Gordon, now a collage athlete compete in a regatta, Ned announces that Gordon plans to marry, Madeleine. Nina, objects and asks Ned to stop the marriage and tell Sam the truth about his paternity. When Ned refuses, Nina decides to tell Charlie the truth. Gordon wins the regatta and Sam, overcome with excitement, suffers a fatal heart attack.

After the funeral, Gordon and Ned get into an argument and Gordon hits Ned, causing Nina to blurt out that he has struck his own father. Gordon, misunderstands and says that he always knew Nina and Ned were in love and gives them his blessing. Ned is about to tell Gordon the truth, but.. will Nina have a change of heart and stop him?

Fun Fact: This was the first film in which Clark Gable's trademark mustache appeared.

By the end of this emotionally moving film, you feel sorry for just about everyone in it and they all deprived themselves of happiness. Great acting, especially for Norma Shearer and Clark Gable

 May Robson (19 April 1858 – 20 October 1942).  In 1884, after being widowed, she became an actress simply to support her children.

Over the next several decades, she flourished on the stage. She starred in the 1916 silent film, A Night Out, an adaptation of the play she co-wrote, The Three Lights.

She made several other silent films, then successfully transitioned to talkies.

 She made 45 films during the 1930s. Among her starring roles was 1931's The She-Wolf, in which she was cast as a miserly millionaire businesswoman based on Hetty Green.

She also starred in the final segment of the anthology film, If I Had a Million (1932) as a rest home resident who gets a new lease on life when she is given a $1,000,000 check by a dying business tycoon.

She played the Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland (1933), Countess Vronsky in Anna Karenina (1936), Aunt Elizabeth in Bringing Up Baby (1938), Aunt Polly in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1938), and a sharp-tongued Granny in A Star Is Born (1937).

Miss Robson was top-billed as late as 1940, starring in Granny Get Your Gun at age 82.

Her last film was 1942's Joan of Paris.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for posting this review. I just got a copy of Strange Interlude and didnt really know whether it was good or not.


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