They Met in Argentina (1941)

76-77 mins | Comedy-drama | 25 April 1941

Writer:

Jerry Cady

Producer:

Lou Brock

Cinematographer:

J. Roy Hunt

Production Designer:

Van Nest Polglase

Production Company:

RKO Radio Pictures, inc.
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HISTORY

A HR production chart includes Betty Jane Rhodes in the cast, but her appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. According to a news item in HR , Jack Hively took over the direction for Les Goodwins when Goodwins was hospitalized with pneumonia. Several reviews note that this film was an attempt by the studio to "woo" the South American market. The film may also have been influenced by the Office of Inter-American Affairs, which was founded in 1940. Headed by Nelson Rockefeller, the office was established by an order of the Council of National Defense to "strengthen bonds between the nations of the Western Hemisphere." The motion picture industry was designated as one of the agencies that could secure a better understanding between North and South America by producing more films with Latin American themes. This film, with its opening song "North America Meets South America," appears to have fostered that understanding. The Var review observes, however, that the picture would not be well received in Latin America because of its exaggerated characterizations of Latin Americans and because of the subordinate role assigned to South American star Alberto Vila.
       Although pre-production news items in HR and LAT note that producer Lou Brock, who was responsible for RKO's Latin-themed 1933 hit Flying Down to Rio (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films 1931-40 ; F3.1406 ), convinced the studio to sign Vila and planned this picture as a star vehicle for him, Vila's role was reduced to a brief appearance in the completed picture. The Var review proved prescient. ... More Less

A HR production chart includes Betty Jane Rhodes in the cast, but her appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. According to a news item in HR , Jack Hively took over the direction for Les Goodwins when Goodwins was hospitalized with pneumonia. Several reviews note that this film was an attempt by the studio to "woo" the South American market. The film may also have been influenced by the Office of Inter-American Affairs, which was founded in 1940. Headed by Nelson Rockefeller, the office was established by an order of the Council of National Defense to "strengthen bonds between the nations of the Western Hemisphere." The motion picture industry was designated as one of the agencies that could secure a better understanding between North and South America by producing more films with Latin American themes. This film, with its opening song "North America Meets South America," appears to have fostered that understanding. The Var review observes, however, that the picture would not be well received in Latin America because of its exaggerated characterizations of Latin Americans and because of the subordinate role assigned to South American star Alberto Vila.
       Although pre-production news items in HR and LAT note that producer Lou Brock, who was responsible for RKO's Latin-themed 1933 hit Flying Down to Rio (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films 1931-40 ; F3.1406 ), convinced the studio to sign Vila and planned this picture as a star vehicle for him, Vila's role was reduced to a brief appearance in the completed picture. The Var review proved prescient. In a post-release news item, HR notes that not only did the negative audience reception of the film cause the studio to abandon all stories with a Latin American background, RKO was also forced to add footage of Vila before Argentina would agree to its release. The picture also marked Brock's last production at RKO. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
American Cinematographer
Mar 41
p. 100.
Box Office
31 May 1941.
---
Daily Variety
13 Jun 1941.
---
Film Daily
14 May 41
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Nov 40
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Dec 40
p. 30.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Jan 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jan 41
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Feb 41
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Mar 41
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Jun 41
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Aug 41
p. 4.
Los Angeles Times
27 May 1940.
---
Motion Picture Herald
17 May 1941.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
22 Mar 41
p. 86.
New York Times
7 Jul 1940.
---
Variety
14 May 41
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
2d unit dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
Prod
WRITERS
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir assoc
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
DANCE
Dance dir
PRODUCTION MISC
Tech dir
SOURCES
SONGS
"North America Meets South America," "We're on the Track," "Contrapunto," "Simpatica," You've Got the Best of Me," "Carefree Carretero," "Amarillo," "Lolita," Cutting the Cane" and "Never Go to Argentina If You Don't Dance," music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Lorenz Hart.
DETAILS
Release Date:
25 April 1941
Production Date:
late November 1940--mid January 1941
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, inc.
Copyright Date:
25 April 1941
Copyright Number:
LP10475
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
76-77
Length(in feet):
6,914
Country:
United States
PCA No:
6901
SYNOPSIS

While in Buenos Aires to buy oil land for his employer, George Hastings, Texan Tim Kelly meets Argentinian heiress Lolita O'Shea during Pan-American Day at the race track. Also at the track is Lolita's perservering suitor, Alberto Delmonte. Near the grandstand, Tim encounters fellow Hastings employee Duke Ferrel, who is in Argentina to represent the Hastings stable. Because Tim's bid for the oil property has been rejected and the Hastings horses have been losing at the track, the two men decide to placate their employer by buying Lucero, the great race horse owned by Lolita's father, Don Enrique O'Shea. To facilitate the sale, Duke asks Santiago, the O'Sheas' servant, to introduce Tim to Don Enrique, who detests all North Americans. After instructing Tim to pretend to be a cattle buyer, the three men ride to the O'Shea estancio, where the cattle auction is to be held. Although Santiago introduces the Texans as cattle buyers, Don Enrique discovers that their target is really his race horse. Lolita, who is attracted to Tim, becomes angry when she overhears him confide to Duke that he is more interested in Lucero than her. When Hastings becomes impatient with Tim's attempts to buy Lucero, he calls Don Enrique directly and offers him $25,000 for the horse. Angered by the Americans' deception, Don Enrique questions Santiago, who then insists that Tim bid at the cattle auction. On the day of the auction, Tim's plan to back out of the bidding fails, and he blunders into paying a fortune for Don Enrique's prize bull. During the festivities following the auction, Don Enrique calls for a game of ... +


While in Buenos Aires to buy oil land for his employer, George Hastings, Texan Tim Kelly meets Argentinian heiress Lolita O'Shea during Pan-American Day at the race track. Also at the track is Lolita's perservering suitor, Alberto Delmonte. Near the grandstand, Tim encounters fellow Hastings employee Duke Ferrel, who is in Argentina to represent the Hastings stable. Because Tim's bid for the oil property has been rejected and the Hastings horses have been losing at the track, the two men decide to placate their employer by buying Lucero, the great race horse owned by Lolita's father, Don Enrique O'Shea. To facilitate the sale, Duke asks Santiago, the O'Sheas' servant, to introduce Tim to Don Enrique, who detests all North Americans. After instructing Tim to pretend to be a cattle buyer, the three men ride to the O'Shea estancio, where the cattle auction is to be held. Although Santiago introduces the Texans as cattle buyers, Don Enrique discovers that their target is really his race horse. Lolita, who is attracted to Tim, becomes angry when she overhears him confide to Duke that he is more interested in Lucero than her. When Hastings becomes impatient with Tim's attempts to buy Lucero, he calls Don Enrique directly and offers him $25,000 for the horse. Angered by the Americans' deception, Don Enrique questions Santiago, who then insists that Tim bid at the cattle auction. On the day of the auction, Tim's plan to back out of the bidding fails, and he blunders into paying a fortune for Don Enrique's prize bull. During the festivities following the auction, Don Enrique calls for a game of El Pato, the violent gaucho competition featuring mounted players beating each other with whips. Alberto leads one of the teams, and Santiago enlists Tim in another to worry Lolita. After Alberto is injured on the playing field, Lolita denounces Tim for deliberately harming him in order to impress her father. Lolita's outburst causes Don Enrique to realize that his daughter has fallen in love with the Texan. To force the reluctant couple to recognize their love for each other, Don Enrique offers Lucero to Tim if he promises to leave for the States immediately. When Lolita discovers Tim's absence, she gallops after him, and the two declare their love for each other. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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