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How to fish - watch and learn. Can Powell reel in Myrna Loy
on 18 October 2010
Connie Allenbury (Myrna Loy) is suing a newspaper for $5 million. The editor Haggerty (Spencer Tracy) realizes that he has to hire back Bill Chandler (William Powell), a man he previously sacked, as Bill is the "best in the business". Bill comes up with the scheme to catch Connie in a compromising situation with himself and use this as a bribe to stop her from filing her lawsuit. First, he must marry Gladys (Jean Harlow) for maximum impact on scandal factor. However, Gladys is engaged to Haggerty and can't stand Bill! This makes for a humorous beginning. The rest of the film follows Bill's attempts to entrap Connie. Gladys and some photographers are to storm in and catch Bill and Connie together, and thus save the newspaper. Things don't go as planned...
The film has an excellent cast. I think William Powell steals the acting honours but that is just opinion. Jean Harlow has some fantastic outfits - check out those fluffy sleeves! - and the sets are great. The film is funny with an enjoyable cast that breeze through this easy-going film.
Sometimes the dialogue can be delivered in that slightly too rapid fashion but it is never irritating. The ending is all rather convenient but so what. I also think it would have been funnier and created more tension between Bill and Heggarty if Bill had suggested that he marry Gladys instead of Heggarty. Poor Gladys has continually had her wedding day scuppered by Heggarty's dedication to his newspaper. Bill could have really added insult to injury by suggesting the idea of himself marrying Gladys. I never quite knew how the film would end with both Gladys and Connie falling for Bill and I found this added an extra dimension of interest to the story. As the story progresses, we see Gladys and Bill getting more and more friendly.
The film transports you into another time - black and white film world - and it's great being there.