The Lady of Scandal (1930)

Passed   |    |  Romance, Comedy, Drama

The Lady of Scandal (1930) Poster

A famous British actress gets involved with two members of a reserved British noble family, whose plan to get rid of her backfires.



  • Ruth Chatterton and Ralph Forbes in The Lady of Scandal (1930)
  • The Lady of Scandal (1930)
  • Ruth Chatterton and Ralph Forbes in The Lady of Scandal (1930)
  • Moon Carroll, Frederick Kerr, Nance O'Neil, and Mackenzie Ward in The Lady of Scandal (1930)
  • Basil Rathbone, Ruth Chatterton, and Ralph Forbes in The Lady of Scandal (1930)

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27 August 2005 | drednm
| Ruth Chatterton Has Charm to Spare
Interesting drawing room comedy from Frederick Lonsdale (On Approval) casts Ruth Chatterton as a stage star engaged to dull Ralph Forbes. It's announced in the papers that they are to marry so he brings her home to meet the relatives who are outraged at having an actress invade their stuffy manor house.

Forbes' father (Herbert Bunston) decides that he will allow it if she quits the stage and stays engaged for 6 months. Three weeks later she cannot abide the oaf and has fallen for Basil Rathbone. She's also brought LIFE into the house in the forms of music, tennis, and "gullet washers" (cocktails).

Chatterton was a charming actress of early talkies and is best remembered as a silly wife in the wonderful Dodsworth. She's terrific here and opens and closes the film with a song-and-dance stage number. Rathbone is OK as the love interest. Others in the cast include Nance O'Neill, Effie Ellsler, Cyril Chadwick, Mackenzie Ward, the oddly named Moon Carroll, Edgar Norton (butler again), Robert Bolder as Chatterton's father, and Frederick Kerr, who steals the film as the old crab who discovers the joys of gullet washers.

The immense set is quite good as is the writing. As with most of Lonsdale's plays, there is a serious undertone. But Chatterton is always very good, and the rapport between Kerr and O'Neill is hilarious. Forbes may well have been the most boring actor in films.

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