For Reel

Page Miss Glory (1935)
March 15, 2014, 3:38 am
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: , ,

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
4 Stars
Page Miss GloryUpset with the way MGM had been utilizing her, William Randolph Hearst sought better roles for mistress Marion Davies when his Cosmopolitan Pictures made the transition over to Warner Brothers in 1935. The first picture made for the studio was Page Miss Glory, an irresistible Cinderella story that sees a common hotel maid given the opportunity of a lifetime when she takes upon the invented persona of the titular celebrity. Davies was a fine comedienne (her work in the late silent Show People is terrific), and she benefits here from the best supporting players that Warner Brothers had to offer. Besides the more familiar faces–including Pat O’Brien, Mary Astor, Lyle Talbot, Allen Jenkins, and Frank McHugh in a bigger part than he was often given–Patsy Kelly is a stand-out as another chambermaid. It is unclear who exactly the joke is on in the film, with just about everyone (including Davies and her ideal lover, a pilot played by Dick Powell) rendered as complete dopes. Regardless, the picture is an amusing distraction about publicity and the way that audience’s consume celebrity images (the conceit being that a conman (O’Brien) creates the perfect woman through a composite of other famous stars–some Dietrich here, Garbo there, etc.). One of the highlights sees a photograph of Dick Powell come to life in a ludicrous, but nonetheless satisfying musical number.

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