The Lady Is Willing (1934)

  |  Comedy


The Lady Is Willing (1934) Poster

A private detective is hired by three men to kidnap a wealthy man's wife in order to get a ransom, but he soon falls for her.


6.1/10
31

Photos

  • Leslie Howard and W. Graham Brown in The Lady Is Willing (1934)
  • Cedric Hardwicke and Kendall Lee in The Lady Is Willing (1934)
  • Arthur Howard in The Lady Is Willing (1934)
  • Nigel Bruce in The Lady Is Willing (1934)
  • Leslie Howard and Nigel Playfair in The Lady Is Willing (1934)
  • Binnie Barnes and Cedric Hardwicke in The Lady Is Willing (1934)

See all photos

Get More From IMDb

For an enhanced browsing experience, get the IMDb app on your smartphone or tablet.

Get the IMDb app

Cast & Crew

Top Billed Cast



Director:

Gilbert Miller

Writers:

Guy Bolton (screenplay), Louis Verneuil (play)

Reviews & Commentary

Add a Review


User Reviews


13 March 2018 | boblipton
5
| Columbia's First English Production is a Harmless Piece of Fluff
When Columbia decided to produce its first film in England, they made their usual canny and economical choices. After casting Leslie Howard in the lead and Cedric Hardwicke as the villain, they enlisted some up-and-coming talent like Binnie Barnes and Nigel Bruce. Gilbert Miller, who would become a distinguished stage producer, directed, and Joe Walker, Capra's favorite camera man was shipped over to Elstree.

The story, as adapted by Guy Bolton, is a bit of fluff: Hardwicke is a stock swindler, whose latest venture has gone bust, and private detective Leslie Howard is recruited to get the investors' money back. His plan is to persuade the villain that he wants to buy a property owned by Hardwicke's wife, Miss Barnes, for an outrageous sum, then kidnap the lady before her signature can be obtained. The ransom set will be the losses of the investors. However, Miss Barnes has a mind and grudges of her own....

Visually it's fine. I credit not only Walker, but set designer Oscar Werndorff. However, there is something off about the performances. Lines are tossed off too fast, as if nothing has any real emotional weight. In a year when Screwball Comedy was beginning to take shape in the United States -- and with the sexual quadrille between Howard, Barnes, Hardwicke and Kendall Lee as Hardwicke's mistress, it was made for screwball -- this is 1920s stage farce without the door slamming, with Howard donning military uniforms and beards and switching Hardwicke's spectacles to confuse him. I'm sure everyone shrugged their shoulders, said it was fine for a first effort and moved on. Miss Barnes and Mr. Bruce got footholds in the US, and everyone continued to work thereafter, usually in better projects.

Critic Reviews


More Like This

49th Parallel

49th Parallel

British Agent

British Agent

The Scarlet Pimpernel

The Scarlet Pimpernel

Reserved for Ladies

Reserved for Ladies

Of Human Bondage

Of Human Bondage

Spitfire

Spitfire

Pygmalion

Pygmalion

It's Love I'm After

It's Love I'm After

'Pimpernel' Smith

'Pimpernel' Smith

Stand-In

Stand-In

Intermezzo

Intermezzo

Captured!

Captured!

Kelvin Harrison Jr. Schools Himself With His Watchlist

Kelvin Harrison Jr., the star of the new movie Waves, is getting a master class from these shows and movies.

Watch now

Featured on IMDb

See what IMDb editors are watching this month, and visit our guides to what's on TV and streaming, video games, and more.

Around The Web

 | 

Powered by ZergNet

More To Explore

Search on Amazon.com