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Lubitsch hath charms. . . .


slaytonf
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Got snagged by The Smiling Lieutenant (1931).  Wasn't planning on watching.  I've seen it many times, but its wit, charm and all around adorableness is irresistible.  It has a level of naiveté and innocence remarkable even for its time.  But it's coupled with Lubitsch's trademark worldliness and sly innuendo (wink, wink).  The weird mismatch creates comic energy.  Everyone in it is a pro, but Miriam Hopkins steals it all at the end:

Gosh, she's fabulous. 

But what is it with Lubitsch and staircases?  He must think they had great comic value.  He has people scampering up and down them all the time.  Not only in this, but in other of his movies, like Trouble in Paradise (1932).

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6 hours ago, slaytonf said:

But what is it with Lubitsch and staircases?  He must think they had great comic value.  He has people scampering up and down them all the time. 

Haha, never noticed. But I would venture to say the above scene definitely benefitted from the stairs. Picture the same scene with just the footage of him running in the hallway through the door-not the same impact of running through different rooms & up/down stairs. Stairs just adds to the absurdity.

Hopkins is a gem. Too bad she's faded to obscurity, unlike her rival Bette Davis. I have never watched The Smiling Lieutenant because I can't stand Chevalier...guess it's time to give it a try & possibly change my opinion!

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20 minutes ago, TikiSoo said:

Haha, never noticed. But I would venture to say the above scene definitely benefitted from the stairs. Picture the same scene with just the footage of him running in the hallway through the door-not the same impact of running through different rooms & up/down stairs. Stairs just adds to the absurdity.

Hopkins is a gem. Too bad she's faded to obscurity, unlike her rival Bette Davis. I have never watched The Smiling Lieutenant because I can't stand Chevalier...guess it's time to give it a try & possibly change my opinion!

I agree with slaytonf that Hopkins steals the show and Colbert is equally just as good. I must confess I am not a huge fan of Chevalier myself, but even he makes the movie a joy to watch. 

Even though she does seem to be unjustly ignored nowadays by today's viewers, you can't deny that she  had quite the career, to the victimized Ivy in 1931'S DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE, to the inconsiderate aunt in 1961'S THE CHILDREN'S HOUR.

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