Production Company: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Top Billed Actors: Norma Shearer, Fredric March, Leslie Howard
IMDb Rating: 7.0
*Best Picture Nominee*
Won 0 Oscars
Nominated for 1 more:
Plot: An American comes to England to fight in the War and ends up falling in love with a girl despite her chess-playing uncle's disapproval.
Although this one might not be remembered, I will remember it for a couple of reasons. Shearer knocks it out of the park again with her superb acting and radiant screen presence. She continues to impress me and it is a wonder she was not nominated for her performance here. Fredric March also does well and their chemistry is palpable at times but a bit over dramatic in others. I also loved the flashback in the second act of the story. An aura of mystery is stirred up in relation to Howard's dead wife and we get to see just how it happens. The flashback links the two sides of the story perfectly as we finally understand Howard's resentment towards March and we see how the lives of the characters are impacted fifty years later.
Although I do like the overall story, I didn't enjoy the plethora of love scenes. Seeing Shearer and March fall for each other is the driving factor of the drama, but the scenes were done to excess. I also did not like the scene transitions. Oftentimes, the film will fade to black as a character says something very lame, for lack of a better word. It almost feels like a television commercial is about to start. I also did not like the ending of the story. What happens to Howard is somewhat of a cop-out. I was really looking forward to his and March's interaction but it never happened. The way March acted after coming back from the war was also a weakness of the movie.
Overall, Shearer reminds me why I adore her so much. The motivations in the story are also highlights of an overly-romantic, somewhat slow drama.
My Score: 7/10