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Frank's Movie Log

My life at the movies.

A still from This Is the Night (1932)

This Is the Night

1932 | United States | 80 min
  • Watched on Saturday Mar 27, 2021 via DVD (2016 | Universal Studios | Cary Grant: The Vault Collection)
    C: 3 stars (out of 5)

    Cary Grant’s debut. He strides onto the screen flashing the suave, charming, confident, continental personality that defined his career. He outshines everyone on screen and even towers over them physically.

    This fits the plot. Grant plays a world-class Javelin thrower, who returns home to find his wife, played by Thelma Todd, in a compromising situation with Roland Young. To assuage Grant’s concerns, Young pretends to be married and hires actress Lili Damita to play the part when both couples travel to Venice.

    Good production values and an almost solid cast make for a pleasant experience. Besides the surprising Grant, Young entertains in a performance reminiscent of his turn in The Unholy Night. Todd proves engaging as well.

    But Damita’s performance as the French ingenue grated. I struggled to understand her draw. Not a fatal flaw, but one that weakens the emotional stakes and mars an otherwise entertaining film.

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