Three on a Match (1932)

63-64 mins | Drama | 29 October 1932

Director:

Mervyn LeRoy

Cinematographer:

Sol Polito

Editor:

Ray Curtiss

Production Designer:

Robert Haas

Production Company:

First National Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The film for the film in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library contains correspondence relating to the film's kidnapping scenes. In the wake of the Lindbergh kidnapping, censor boards were reluctant to pass a film that contained child kidnapping sequences because they felt that the public would resent such a film. Later, East coast censor boards agreed to pass this picture because the kidnappers in it are captured, but they subsequently entered into a "gentlemen's agreement" that the industry would not make any more pictures with kidnapping themes. The film was remade by Warner Bros. in 1938 as Broadway Musketeers (see ... More Less

The film for the film in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library contains correspondence relating to the film's kidnapping scenes. In the wake of the Lindbergh kidnapping, censor boards were reluctant to pass a film that contained child kidnapping sequences because they felt that the public would resent such a film. Later, East coast censor boards agreed to pass this picture because the kidnappers in it are captured, but they subsequently entered into a "gentlemen's agreement" that the industry would not make any more pictures with kidnapping themes. The film was remade by Warner Bros. in 1938 as Broadway Musketeers (see above). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
29 Oct 32
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Sep 32
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
1 Oct 32
pp. 52-53.
New York Times
29 Oct 32
p. 18.
Variety
1 Nov 32
p. 12.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
WRITERS
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Vitaphone Orch cond
Orch arr
DETAILS
Release Date:
29 October 1932
Copyright Claimant:
First National Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
25 October 1932
Copyright Number:
LP3364
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
63-64
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Mary Keaton, Vivian Revere and Ruth Westcott are schoolgirls together. Ten years later, they run into each other by accident and decide to meet for lunch. Mary has become an actress after a few years in reform school, while Ruth is a secretary and Vivian has married wealthy lawyer Robert Kirkwood and has a son Junior. Although her life seems to be the most successful of the three, Vivian is unhappy and decides to take an ocean voyage with her son, leaving Robert at home. Just before the ship sails, Mary, who is saying goodbye to a friend, introduces Vivian to playboy gambler Michael Loftus. Vivian leaves the ship with him and goes into hiding from her husband. Ruth and Mary are disturbed by Vivian's lack of interest in her son, so Mary visits Robert to tell him where to find Junior. Robert becomes friendly with Mary and Ruth, who continue to visit Junior, and after his divorce is final, he and Mary are married. Meanwhile, Vivian has hit bottom. Michael has gambled away all their money, and when his check bounces, Ace, the owner of a club, demands cash. Michael tries to blackmail Robert for the money, but he throws Michael out. In desperation, Michael kidnaps Junior. While the police start a city-wide search, Vivian overhears plans to kill her child. She writes a note on her clothing with lipstick, revealing the location of the hideout, and then jumps to her death from the ... +


Mary Keaton, Vivian Revere and Ruth Westcott are schoolgirls together. Ten years later, they run into each other by accident and decide to meet for lunch. Mary has become an actress after a few years in reform school, while Ruth is a secretary and Vivian has married wealthy lawyer Robert Kirkwood and has a son Junior. Although her life seems to be the most successful of the three, Vivian is unhappy and decides to take an ocean voyage with her son, leaving Robert at home. Just before the ship sails, Mary, who is saying goodbye to a friend, introduces Vivian to playboy gambler Michael Loftus. Vivian leaves the ship with him and goes into hiding from her husband. Ruth and Mary are disturbed by Vivian's lack of interest in her son, so Mary visits Robert to tell him where to find Junior. Robert becomes friendly with Mary and Ruth, who continue to visit Junior, and after his divorce is final, he and Mary are married. Meanwhile, Vivian has hit bottom. Michael has gambled away all their money, and when his check bounces, Ace, the owner of a club, demands cash. Michael tries to blackmail Robert for the money, but he throws Michael out. In desperation, Michael kidnaps Junior. While the police start a city-wide search, Vivian overhears plans to kill her child. She writes a note on her clothing with lipstick, revealing the location of the hideout, and then jumps to her death from the window. +

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

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.