Love Before Breakfast

1936

Comedy / Romance

0
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 55%
IMDb Rating 6.3 10 707

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Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
April 03, 2021 at 07:20 PM

Director

Cast

Nan Grey as Telephone Girl
Carole Lombard as Kay Colby
Joyce Compton as Mary Lee
Cesar Romero as Bill Wadsworth
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
643.71 MB
1280*942
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 10 min
P/S counting...
1.17 GB
1456*1072
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 10 min
P/S counting...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by elginbrod2000 6 / 10

Has potential but no magic.

My main disappointment with this film is the choice of leading man. Indeed Preston Foster was primarily a straight actor and unaccustomed to romantic comedy. I simply do not see why Carole Lombard's character, Kay Colby would have the slightest temptation to fall in love with Foster's character, Scott Miller, a pushy, egotistical, wiseacre. Perhaps the moral of the tale is that if a man, no matter how obnoxious, pursues a woman long enough, she will give in. The film seems to start out in the middle of the story. No background is given to explain Kay Colby's relationship with either men. And then before you know it one of them is exiled to Japan and disappears from the middle third of the picture.

Now the film does pick up as it goes along and entertains sufficiently with snappy dialog and boisterous incidents. The "storm at sea" scene is particularly satisfying. Perhaps due to the fact that Carole did all her own stunts, taking all the punishment herself and sparing her stand-in. However, the ending is much too abrupt. All the conflict is resolved in the last few seconds of the movie. The characters are not allowed to play out their feelings for us on screen. Perhaps it has all gone on inside their heads, but alas we have missed it. Overall this film is worth seeing once for Lombard fans, but it does not endear and fades quickly from memory.

The popularity of "Love Before Breakfast" was helped at the time from the success of Carole's previous film which was still in theaters, "Hands Across the Table". This film would signal her rise to fame and was a precursor to five straight hits in a row over the next two years.

Reviewed by oldblackandwhite 8 / 10

Plush Cinematography, Lombard's Beauty Spark Minor White Telephone Movie

Love Before Breakfast features an amusing love triangle between three shallow, selfish characters, played to perfection by Carole Lombard, Preston Foster, and Cesar Romero. Foster, a filthy rich oil baron, "pushes buttons" to have employee Romero, Carole's fiancé, sent to Japan, so he can move in on Carole. Carole is devastated the man she loves is leaving her for two years, but the unworthy object of said love has a hard time hiding his glee at the promotion the overseas job means. Even as his ship sails with poor Carole tearfully waving goodbye, true love Ceasar can be seen at the railing obviously enjoying the attentions of a sexy countess, played with carnivorous exuberance by buxom Betty Lawford. Foster's character is such an egomaniac he smugly brags to Carole about his fiancé-to-Japan manipulation. Thus begins the battle of wills between Carole and Foster that lasts for the rest of this entertaining, witty, little "white telephone movie". They take turns alternately courting and resisting each other with lots of dirty tricks along he way. Both principles have wicked senses of humor. Preston thinks it's hilarious when Carole gets her eye blacked in a night club brawl she engineered. Her get-even prank is to set him up at the local riding club with an evil tempered horse that is sure to throw him. The entire episode at the stable is the funniest in this very amusing picture, except perhaps for the riotous closing scene.

One of the charms of this little comedy is very strong but subtle characterization, thanks to light comedy specialist Walter Lang's expert direction and a script which was surprisingly clever, considering that it seems to have been virtually committee written. Herbert Fields gets credit for the screenplay, but with input from no less than six other writers, including Preston Sturges! Of the Carole Lombard pictures yours truly has seen, this one gives her the best character. In some of her other movies she is just too much of a dizzy dame to be appealing. Especially in My Man Godfrey (1936), in which she's so foolish and childish, she seems almost retarded. In Love Before Breakfast Carole comes off more sophisticated, clever, and witty. Never mind she is spoiled, self-centered, wishy-washy, and lazy -- she lives in a swank apartment with her well-off mother (likeable Janet Beecher) and seems to have never even considered getting a job. And of course Carole is beautiful. Her beauty is well accented by Ted Tetzlaff's gloriously luminous black and white photography, a standout job here even in an era when terrific cinematography is practically taken for granted. The left side of Carole Lombard's gorgeous face was tragically scarred in a late 1920's automobile accident. Even the best of Hollywood makeup couldn't quite cover it, so that special care had to be taken with lighting and camera angles. Tetzlaff washes Carole's closeups in tenebristic shadowing which illuminates only the right side. A generous use of soft focus for her closeups seems to have set the tone for the overall look of the picture, and a very pleasing look it is.

Love Before Breakfast is a typical example of a type of picture called "white telephone movie" in the trade. Younger people, used to telephones of all sizes, shapes, and colors, may not remember, as sadly aged oldblackandwhite does, when nearly every one of them was an unglamorous, utilitarian, flat black. Only rich folks had the glossy white ones that you had to special order and pay extra for on your telephone bill. Hence white telephone movies are about rich guys and rich babes lounging in their ritzy apartments and palatial mansions, going out to glittering night clubs, sailing on their swell yachts, and gabbing on their white telephones. Standard cinema history wisdom portrays this type of movie as especially made for the depressed poor of the Great Depression, who wanted to escape into such fantasies, rather than watch any realistic social melodrama that would remind them of their own distressed lives. The Depression may have made white telephone movies more popular all right, but please note that the same type of picture was very popular in the 1920's, a period of previously unexampled prosperity, and continues to to be popular in various altered forms to this day.

Love Before Breakfast is a solid white telephone job. Charming cast, clever story, plush sets, sensuous cinematography, witty, amusing dialog, fast pacing, and funny gags. A lot of glossy, smooth Old Hollywood entertainment packed into and hour and ten minutes.

Reviewed by HarlowMGM 6 / 10

Glamour Before Substance but Lovely Lombard Makes it Work

The best thing one can say about LOVE BEFORE BREAKFAST is that it looks wonderful with sparkling cinematography by Ted Tetzlaff, lovely gowns for Lombard by Travis Banton, and stunning art direction by Albert S. D'Agostino, making one forget this film was from Universal, then not one of the major studios and only occasionally producing "A" movies such as this. The movie wonderfully captures the privileged life of the rich with ocean liners, elegant New York nightclubs, weekends yachting with friends or private horseback riding trails. There's no Depression on this planet with executives buying $2,000 worth of charity raffle tickets without batting an eye which surely appealed to the considerably less comfortable general public of the era. Add to the mix a beautiful, appealing heroine in the form of Carole Lombard and what more could you want. Well maybe a better script, better leading men, and more appealing characters.

Lombard stars as a socialite engaged to rising businessman Cesar Romero somewhat unaware of the obsession another acquaintance, ultra rich Preston Foster, has for her. Foster buys out the oil company Romero works for so he can give him a promotion and get him out the way - a two-year stint as a vice president in the Japan offices!! The brash, unctuous but supposedly (according to the screenwriter) agreeable Foster can't help but brag about his machinations to Lombard moments after Romero is on his way to Japan, to which Lombard is quite naturally repelled. Considerable time is then devoted to further control-freak methods by Foster to win Lombard who comes to despise the man she (accurately) calls a "little Napoleon". Eventually, he wears her down and she agrees to marry him if blatantly admitting she is not in love with him. Having won his prize, Foster is happy enough with this but soon decides he would rather win her completely so he brings Romero back to New York, but he still has a few tricks up his sleeve.

The Preston Foster character is so charmless and controlling it's good to see Lombard fighting him every step of the way but it's difficult to see any supposed "good points" the man is supposed to have. Most curious is Lombard's mother Janet Beecher favoritism for Foster of her daughter's two suitors, is it simply because he is the far richer beau? At one point late in the film Foster is actually quite indifferent to Lombard's safety which appalls Beecher if only for a moment. Couldn't she then see the real man whom her daughter was well familiar with? Lombard is terrific in this movie, raising it to the level of a fairly entertaining movie, one can imagine what a total misfire it would be without her. Some reviewers have commented she gets rather abrasive herself into the film but given her non-stop harassment in the guise of love (or more accurately, obsession) from Foster, I'd say her hostility and attitude are more than justified. Foster is quite unappealing but it's not his fault as much as the screenwriter's take on the character, although his lack of appeal is undercut by the blandness and shallowness of Lombard's other suitor, Cesar Romero. Joyce Compton has a cute bit as a visiting southern débutante whom Lombard briefly entangles in one of her payback stunts against Foster.

The movie quickly wraps things up with a quickie ending that would seem direct steal from Lombard's classic MY MAN GODFREY if not for the fact that this movie predated that legendary film by several months.

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