14 May 2012 | Michael_Elliott
The Stars Deserved Better Material
The Golden Arrow (1936)
** (out of 4)
Pleasant, if rather forgettable, romantic comedy from Warner has a heiress (Bette Davis) growing tired of people controlling her life so she hits the town with a reporter (George Brent) who had previously tried to get a story from her. While out the duo have a good time and the rich lady requests that they get married for convenience sake but the reporter requests that he not use any of her money. The plot of this thing is rather stupid and goes in all sorts of directions. While the film remains entertaining thanks to the stars, one can't help but feel that their talents are being wasted in such a minor film like this. Again, if you're a fan of Davis or Brent then you're going to at least be entertained from start to finish but this is clear case where the studio factory was just pumping out material without putting too much effort into it. The film starts off well enough as Davis does a very good job playing the fun loving girl who's just wanting to get out from under the control that people have on her. I thought the scenes with her and Brent at the fair were a lot of fun and it really did seem as if the two stars were having a blast. The film certainly takes a nose dive after the marriage as the screwball elements start to come into play and they just don't contain any spark or laughs. I thought the material just wasn't strong enough and Brent's constant hissy fits were more annoying than charming. Both leads are very good together and we get some nice support from Dick Foran and Eugene Palette but the story lets them all down.