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Forsaking All Others

(1934 b 83')

En: 6 Ed: 5

A woman tries to marry her screwy childhood friend until she realizes her other friend loves her in this romantic comedy adapted from a play by E. B. Roberts and F. M. Cavett.

Mary Clay (Joan Crawford) is preparing to marry Dylan Todd (Robert Montgomery) tomorrow. Jeff Williams (Clark Gable) arrives from Spain and is met by his friend Shemp (Charles Butterworth); he intends to propose to Mary; but before he does, she says she is happy to be marrying Dyl. Connie (Frances Drake) calls on Dyl and says she loves him; they drink and recall their time together in Paris. Jeff and Shemp are found sleeping in a wet hotel room with a dripping fire hose after the bachelor party, which Dyl missed. Jeff orders numerous cornflowers, but Mary thinks they are from Dyl. At the church Jeff gets a message that Dyl married Connie.

Jeff and Shemp go to the country to visit Paula (Billie Burke) and Mary. Jeff cooks a stew. Mary gets invited to a party by Connie and Dyl. Connie apologizes to Mary for "snatching" Dyl, and Mary assumes they were already "married" in Paris. Dyl complains to Connie about her inviting Mary, and he tells Mary he is miserable. Connie gets jealous, and Jeff tries to explain. As Jeff takes Mary home, she says she is happy; but both realize she isn't. Jeff and Shemp call on Mary to take her out; but Dyl calls and is coming over. Jeff tells Mary not to see him; they quarrel, and he spanks her.

Dyl with Mary fools around selling women cider and milk at a roadside stand. While kissing Mary, he drives off the road. They walk to Paula's house and arrive in the rain. Dyl calls his valet to come get him in the morning, the delay disappointing Mary. Dyl makes a fire but burns a spinning wheel and catches on fire. Paula calls Jeff to go after Mary. Jeff, Paula, and Shemp go to Paula's house. Jeff reprimands Mary, and Dyl complains he caught a cold and was burned. Mary tells Jeff she was a fool. Connie arrives, and Jeff and Mary walk out together. When Dyl is seen, Connie threatens publicity. Jeff suggests to Connie that Dyl provide for her future.

Dyl is divorced and is marrying Mary. Mary asks Jeff why he went away. He congratulates her and says he is sailing for Spain before the wedding. Then he finally tells her he has been in love with her for twenty years. Shemp tells Mary that Jeff sent the cornflowers, and she realizes that Jeff cares more for her than Dyl does. Jeff left for the ship, but Mary goes to him there. In the final scene Dyl sees the ship depart.

After Dyl stands up Mary at the wedding to marry Connie, the audience is rooting for her to get together with Jeff, while the irresponsible Dyl bumbles. The long loyalty of Jeff is finally rewarded.

Copyright © 1999 by Sanderson Beck

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