Smilin' Through (1932)

96-97 or 100 mins | Fantasy, Melodrama, Romance | 24 September 1932

Director:

Sidney Franklin

Cinematographer:

Lee Garmes

Editor:

Margaret Booth

Production Designer:

Cedric Gibbons

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Corp.
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HISTORY

According to production charts in HR , in late 1930, Samuel Goldwyn was preparing to produce a version of the story with Joan Bennett as the star. A news item in HR in Dec 1931 noted that Hans Kraly and John Meehan were working on a script for the M-G-M film; however, they are not credited onscreen or in reviews, and the extent of their participation in the released film has not been determined. The picture received an Academy Award nomination in the Outstanding Production category. According to the M-G-M "Campaign Book" for a re-release of the film for the 1934-35 season, the picture was brought back "by public demand." A version of the story was performed on radio by Jane Cowl for the Lux Radio Theatre on 4 Nov 1934 and on the same program on 29 Apr 1940 starring Robert Taylor and Barbara Stanwyck. M-G-M made another adaptation of the play in 1941, starring Jeanette MacDonald, Brian Aherne and Gene Raymond. The Frank Borzage-directed, musical film was co-written by Donald Ogden Stewart with a storyline that closely followed the earlier ... More Less

According to production charts in HR , in late 1930, Samuel Goldwyn was preparing to produce a version of the story with Joan Bennett as the star. A news item in HR in Dec 1931 noted that Hans Kraly and John Meehan were working on a script for the M-G-M film; however, they are not credited onscreen or in reviews, and the extent of their participation in the released film has not been determined. The picture received an Academy Award nomination in the Outstanding Production category. According to the M-G-M "Campaign Book" for a re-release of the film for the 1934-35 season, the picture was brought back "by public demand." A version of the story was performed on radio by Jane Cowl for the Lux Radio Theatre on 4 Nov 1934 and on the same program on 29 Apr 1940 starring Robert Taylor and Barbara Stanwyck. M-G-M made another adaptation of the play in 1941, starring Jeanette MacDonald, Brian Aherne and Gene Raymond. The Frank Borzage-directed, musical film was co-written by Donald Ogden Stewart with a storyline that closely followed the earlier version. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
27 May 32
p. 7.
Film Daily
15 Oct 32
p. 4.
HF
18 Jun 32
p. 8.
HF
9 Jul 32
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Dec 31
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Jul 32
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Aug 32
p. 28.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Sep 32
p. 2.
Motion Picture Herald
22 Oct 32
p. 31.
New York Times
15 Oct 32
p. 13.
Variety
18 Oct 32
p. 15.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Gowns
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Smiling Through by Jane Cowl and Jane Murfin (New York, 30 Dec 1919).
SONGS
"Smilin' Through," words and music by Arthur A. Penn
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
24 September 1932
Production Date:
mid July--late August 1932
Copyright Claimant:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Distriobuting Corp.
Copyright Date:
5 October 1932
Copyright Number:
LP3303
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
96-97 or 100
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
SYNOPSIS

In turn-of-the-century England, John Carteret still mourns the death of his fiancée Moonyean Clare, who died on their wedding day in 1868. As John and Moonyean were taking their marriage vows, Jeremy Wayne, a close friend of Moonyean's who had wanted to marry her himself, aimed his pistol at John in a drunken, jealous rage. When the gun discharged, however, the bullet hit Moonyean, who died promising John that she would come back to him. Now John spends his days talking with her spirit in the garden, the place where they were the happiest. Over the years, she has become his only comfort and remains as beautiful as ever. John's friend, Dr. Owen, thinks that John lives too much in the past, and asks him to care for Moonyean's recently orphaned five-year-old niice Kathleen. John is reluctant, but when he meets the sweet child, he cannot send her away and becomes a devoted guardian. By 1915, the child has grown into a beautiful young woman, the image of her late aunt and the light of John's life. She has many suitors, none of whom interest her, until one rainy afternoon when she and her friend Willie Ainley take refuge in a deserted mansion. There she meets the current owner, handsome American Kenneth Wayne, who is Jeremy's son. After Moonyean's death, Jeremy ran away to America and married. Kenneth, who has just come to England to fight in the war, knows nothing of his father's crime, nor does Kathleen, and the two fall in love. When Kathleen tells John about Kenneth, however, he tells her the tragic story of ... +


In turn-of-the-century England, John Carteret still mourns the death of his fiancée Moonyean Clare, who died on their wedding day in 1868. As John and Moonyean were taking their marriage vows, Jeremy Wayne, a close friend of Moonyean's who had wanted to marry her himself, aimed his pistol at John in a drunken, jealous rage. When the gun discharged, however, the bullet hit Moonyean, who died promising John that she would come back to him. Now John spends his days talking with her spirit in the garden, the place where they were the happiest. Over the years, she has become his only comfort and remains as beautiful as ever. John's friend, Dr. Owen, thinks that John lives too much in the past, and asks him to care for Moonyean's recently orphaned five-year-old niice Kathleen. John is reluctant, but when he meets the sweet child, he cannot send her away and becomes a devoted guardian. By 1915, the child has grown into a beautiful young woman, the image of her late aunt and the light of John's life. She has many suitors, none of whom interest her, until one rainy afternoon when she and her friend Willie Ainley take refuge in a deserted mansion. There she meets the current owner, handsome American Kenneth Wayne, who is Jeremy's son. After Moonyean's death, Jeremy ran away to America and married. Kenneth, who has just come to England to fight in the war, knows nothing of his father's crime, nor does Kathleen, and the two fall in love. When Kathleen tells John about Kenneth, however, he tells her the tragic story of Moonyean, and makes her promise never to see Kenneth again. Because she and Kenneth have fallen so deeply in love, she cannot give him up, however, and continues to meet him in secret. The night before Kenneth is to report for active service, Kathleen tells John that she is going to marry Kenneth that night, and John asks her to leave. Because Kenneth is worried that Kathleen might become a widow, and he knows how much she cares for her guardian, he sends her home without marrying her. After the war ends, Kathleen waits for Kenneth's return and finds him one day in the Wayne house. Because he has been severely wounded in the war, Kenneth does not want to be a burden to Kathleen and pretends that he no longer loves her. Shattered, she returns home, where Dr. Owen tells John what has happened. Walking in the garden, John is joined by the spirit of Moonyean, who tells him to forget the past and help the young lovers. He then summons Kenneth and brings him and Kathleen together so that they will be able to marry and go to America. That evening, after Kathleen and Kenneth have gone, John plays chess with Dr. Owen and apparently falls asleep. When the doctor quietly leaves, Moonyean again appears and takes John's hand. John's body remains in the chair, but his youthful spirit arises and he walks away, hand-in-hand with his beloved Moonyean. +

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

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