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Cafe Society (1939) DVD

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Cafe Society (1939)


Edward H. Griffith    


Virginia Van Upp (screenplay),  Virginia Van Upp (story)    


Madeleine CarrollFred MacMurrayShirley Ross 
To win a bet, Christopher West, the daughter of wealth and a member of the cafe society, marries reporter Crick O'Bannon. Crick believes that his marriage is a union of love until he overhears his wife tell one of her friends about the bet. To get even with Chris, Crick writes a story about his wife's betrayal, prompting Chris' grandfather, Christopher West, Sr., to apologize for her granddaughter's cavalier attitude. To avoid gossip, Mr. West requests that the couple live togehter until a divorce can be quietly arranged, but Crick dislikes his wife's society friends and decides to live apart from her. Despite her constant bickering with Crick, Chris discovers that she is jealous of Crick's friend, nightclub singer Bells Browne. Resigned to losing Crick to Bells, Chris decides to sail for Europe but her grandfather alerts Crick, who meets Chris onboard her ship and tries to explain to her that Bells is only a friend. Chris follows Crick to shore, but at the club that night, she becomes so jealous that she convinces the club owner to fire Bells, who sings there. After Bill the bartender at the club yells at Chris for her brash behaviour, Chris realizes the error of her ways and atones by having Bells reinstated and admitting to Crick that she has been an awful fool.                 

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  1. Typical but entertaining 1930's madcap Comedy 5 Star Review

    Posted by on Dec 17th 2017

    Madeleine Carroll came to Hollywood from British films with a wish and a promise. Her wish was to be cast in meaningful films that rise above the circumstances of the then present. So naturally she is cast in a series of comedies that entertain the oppressed people of the Depression. Café Society is a film during the time when people wanted to forget their problems in a bit of fantasy with the rich pitted against the working man/woman. This is the first of five movies that Madeleine Carroll and Fred MacMurray played together. Obviously they had that chemistry on which Hollywood loved to capitalize. In fact, all their films together were most if not all written by Virginia Van Upp and directed by Edward M. Griffith;undoubtedly a winning team if not a comfortable alliance for working together.
    While the plot is typical 1930's madcap comedy with a bit of a moral to humble a rich girl, the story moves very smoothly with non of the gaps of dissonance reminiscent of today's disjoined plots. Add with a happy ending and you leave Café Society feeling good.
    As far as the promise of Madeleine Carroll, she wanted to make a difference in the world to make things better for mankind, especially for the children. She left Hollywood as one of the top paid Hollywood actresses to help in the war effort during WWII. After the war she attempted to produce movies that would help the plight of the orphans in Europe. When this failed, she tried to make a comeback to films; she even made a film with Fred MacMurray again in 1947 Don't Trust your Husband. She continued to be a good Samaritan, but was content to leave Hollywood when as she said it was a good time to do so.
    It is notable to mention that many of the actresses who quit Hollywood like Ms. Carroll have some if not all of their movies unavailable to the public today. I really appreciate movie buffs like Milo who make these kind of movies available...and Milo, I am still waiting for you to find and make a copy of Safari with Madeleine Carroll and Douglas Fairbanks Jr.

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