For Reel

Big Business Girl (1931)
August 27, 2012, 6:31 am
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: William A. Seiter

One of many films of the pre-Code era in which a driven woman makes it only so far up the corporate ladder before romance brings her back down to earth, Big Business Girl stars then 18-year-old Loretta Young as a woman who uses both her intelligence and sex appeal to find steady career progression in the advertising world. The problem is that she, unbeknownst to her wolfish boss played by Ricardo Cortez, is married to Frank Albertson, a bandleader who has taken a job in Paris. Cinematographer Sol Polito constructs an excellent opening sequence in which young, lustful couples struggle to keep their hands off of each other at a ball. The camera contributes to a vivid sense of place, with the relationship between the leads made clear using clever compositions, as well as a number of comedic vignettes rendered all-the-more funny using precise blocking (a young woman’s dress accentuates her ample derriere in the foreground as an old society matron scoffs in the background). Neither Young or Albertson are particularly exciting on screen – Young, beautiful as she is, doesn’t have the sexual cunning of Barbara Stanwyck in Baby Face, and Albertson is obnoxious, spending the entirety of the picture jealously whining. The middle section drags, but a late appearance by Joan Blondell as a sassy prostitute enlivens the material once again, aiding the sinking production with a satisfying finish.

2 Comments so far
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Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your content seem to be
running off the screen in Firefox. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with web browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
The design look great though! Hope you get the problem resolved soon.
Many thanks

Comment by lame de terrasse

Thanks for the comment!

I can’t seem to replicate the problem with any of my browsers (including Firefox), but I’ll try to look into it.

Comment by Eric Fuerst

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