Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


DIVORCE (1945) Director: William Nigh.

Diane Carter (Kay Francis), an adventuress who has married and divorced four wealthy men, returns to her home town and discovers that her ex-beau Bob Phillips (Bruce Cabot) is happily married and has two adorable little boys. Diane and Bob go into business together, and it turns out that Diane is better at helping him realize his ambitions than his pretty wife Martha (Helen Mack) is. Martha soon realizes that she is right to be suspicious of their relationship.... This was one of three films Francis did for Monogram studios, the last of her career, and it's not very memorable. She gives a good performance but plays a character so unlikable that she practically sneers in Martha's face when Bob tells her he's in love with her, Diane. This is the kind of movie that wants us to believe it's a happy ending if the husband goes back to the wife, even though Bob not only shows bad taste in choosing Diane over Martha, but neglects his two little boys and proves all around a stinker. Cabot is fine as the heel of a husband, and Helen Mack is lovely as Martha. Despite some good dialogue, the script is superficial and the characters one-dimensional.

Verdict: Watchable for Kay but no great shakes. **.

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