Before she appeared in a string of mawkish melodramas, Barbara Stanwyck starred in several sterling comedies. Among the best is Ball of Fire from star director Howard Hawks, based on a screenplay by director-in-the-making Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett.
Stanwyck plays a nightclub singer whose snappy street-slang attracts the attention of bookish encyclopedia editor Gary Cooper and his aged bachelor collegues, who devote their lives to compiling the perfect encyclopedia. At first they are just professionally interested in her, but soon she charms the old fogeys into letting her hide from the cops (and her gangster boyfriend)in their mansion.
At first she resents her forced stay, but eventually she falls for the charm and honesty of bookworm Gary Cooper, who realizes there's more to life than books.
Sounds corny? Believe me, it's anything but! Stanwyck is simply scorching as the wisecracking "tart with a heart" and the story is both amusing and heartwarming.
If you like well-written comedies with a heart, this one won't disappoint.