Honor Among Lovers

1931

Drama / Romance

0
IMDb Rating 6.8 10 302

woman director pre-code secretary

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Plot summary


Uploaded by: FREEMAN

Director

Top cast

Ginger Rogers as Doris Brown
Fredric March as Jerry Stafford
Elisha Cook Jr. as Office Boy
Claudette Colbert as Julia Traynor

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by blanche-2 6 / 10

okay precode

Directed by Dorothy Arzner, Honor Among Lovers concerns a smart and efficient secretary, Julia (Claudette Colbert) to mogul Jeffy Stafford (Fredric March) who is in love with her.

Knowing that she can't fit in with Stafford's wealthy friends, Julia marries Philip Craig (Monroe Owsley), who turns to be a weak loser and winds up putting both of them in a terrible situation.

Colbert is absolutely wonderful in this -- natural, charming, and relaxed. Charlie Ruggles is a riot as a stockbroker, and watch for Ginger Rogers in a small role.

Nothing special except for the performances. And, we get a chance to see Claudette Colbert's right side.

Reviewed by perfectpawn 5 / 10

Pre-Code how-to on sexual harassment in the workplace

We've all had to sit through those tedious sexual harassment videos at work – bland, patronizing productions that are required viewing for all new employees. Companies could make the experience a whole lot more fun if they just showed this film instead.

Moustache-sporting Fredric March is wealthy CEO Jerry Stafford, a debonair gadabout who secretly pines for his cute and unattached secretary Julie Traynor (Claudette Colbert). Not so secretly, actually – within the first ten minutes Stafford hits on Julie with abandon and then steals a kiss which leaves her flustered. He brushes it off with a "I was surprised just as much as you were" (though a careful reviewing of the scene confirms that he wasn't surprised at all), then pops open the wine – they're having lunch in his office, natch – and asks her to go on a cruise around the world with him. Safe to say, this guy would be in white collar prison these days. Even better, a few scenes later Julie marries her low-incomed broker of a fiancé (Philip Craig, as played by the Pee Wee Herman-looking Monroe Owsley); she reports to work the following Monday to tell Stafford she won't go on that cruise with him after all, on account of marriage. Stafford's response? He fires her!

I should mention here that Jerry Stafford is the hero of this film. Yes, we're certainly in the world of 1930s cinema.

Stafford doesn't turn out to be the biggest cad. That would be Craig, who by his and Julie's first anniversary has become wealthy, due mostly to the money Stafford has given his brokerage firm. Craig loses all of his newfound wealth on a silk deal Stafford cautioned against. Only problem is, Craig used some of Stafford's money as well…without telling him. Destitute, Julie goes to Stafford and asks for money, offering herself in exchange. Here the movie becomes like the 1930 version of "The Cheat" (available on the Pre-Code Hollywood DVD set), with foul play, accidental shootings, and exonerations. Only in this movie no one gets branded.

This was the second of four on screen pairings for Colbert and March. The following year they reunited for DeMille's "Sign of the Cross" and, a month after that, for Mitchell Leisen's "Tonight Is Ours" (filmed in late '32 but released in January '33 – and ostensibly credited to director Stuart Walker, who according to all and sundry did nothing). I enjoy these two together, though apparently Colbert didn't; March was notorious for getting a bit too "familiar" with his leading ladies. Colbert reportedly disliked the man – there are stories of March wandering around "in a daze" on the set of "Sign of the Cross," he was so nuts about her.

Overall, a predictable melodrama that's most memorable for its (nowadays) jawdropping displays of sexual harassment in the workplace and the fact that it features three celebrities (Colbert, March, and a twenty one year-old Ginger Rogers) on the brink of their still-enduring fame. Dorothy Arzner's directorial work is okay, but nothing incredible -- the camera's static most times and, other than a solemn scene of Claudette walking up a hauntingly-lit staircase toward the end of the film, there aren't many novel shots. Arzner's work was much better in her subsequent film with March, "Merrily We Go To Hell" (also included on the Pre-Code Hollywood DVD set).

Reviewed by kidboots 9 / 10

Risqué Business!!

What a terrific movie, it has everything - romance, risqué business, crime, violence!! Beautiful Claudette Colbert had a role she could really grab hold of - she played efficient secretary (as only Claudette could play them) Julia Traynor who seems to be more respected in the boardroom than her playboy boss Jerry Stafford (Frederic March at his most sincerest!!). He has a "thing" for Julia and has offered her the usual - a world cruise, a Park Avenue penthouse, everything except marriage but Julia knows they are from two different worlds as he hasn't introduced her to his snooty friends. When he finally does offer her a gold ring he finds she already has one - she has married long time boyfriend Phillip Craig that morning. But it's Monroe Owsley and when was the last time you saw him as a really nice guy!!

Jerry then offers Phil's firm some brokerage business and Phil is eager for the chance to prove himself but Julia is worried that he doesn't have the business skills to pull it off. A year later the tale is told: at their wedding anniversary Julia is still eager to be supportive but big headed Phil is neglectful, as well as trying to end his latest love affair to a tearful girl. By the end of the night he is exposed as an embezzler - he has been pouring whatever money he can get, usually other people's, into a worthless Silk stock. "Have you ever heard of a resort called "Sing-Sing", come up and see me sometime"!! he manages to wise crack between tears and tearing of hair!! Julia promises to stand by her man - and goes to Jerry to "sell herself" (if he still wants her) for the amount Phil has embezzled!! Phil finds out, thinks Julia really has sold herself and goes to Jerry's to have it out with him!! Just when you think Phil couldn't get any lower his interview with the police has him tearfully pointing the finger at Julia as the possible murderer.

A nifty little movie with wonderful support from Charlie Ruggles as a rah-rah raccoon coated drunk!! Playing his dumb dora Doris is Ginger Rogers. With about 3 lines of dialogue and photographed looking pretty ordinary it was such a come-down from her attention getting flapper role in "Young Man of Manhattan" of only the year before. She had been signed to Paramount to develop along the lines of Helen Kane but she was in so much demand on Broadway where her cute baby talk flapper roles made shows such as "Top Speed" and "Girl Crazy" so popular that she found it hard to fulfill her movie contract. After this she moved to Pathe but one Paramount executive regretted letting her go!!

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