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Politics (1931)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 25 July 1931 (USA)
Middle-aged widow Hattie Burns becomes fed up when local small-town politicians ignore corruption and decides to run for mayor herself.

Director:

Charles Reisner (as Charles F. Riesner)

Writers:

Zelda Sears (story), Malcolm Stuart Boylan (story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Marie Dressler ... Hattie Burns
Polly Moran ... Ivy Higgins
Roscoe Ates ... Peter Higgins (as Rosco Ates)
Karen Morley ... Myrtle Burns
William Bakewell ... Benny Emerson
John Miljan ... Jim Curango
Joan Marsh ... Daisy Evans
Tom McGuire ... Mayor Tom Collins
Kane Richmond ... Nifty Morgan
Mary Alden ... Mrs. Mary Evans
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Storyline

Middle-aged, small-town widow Hattie Burns is angered when a friend's daughter is inadvertently killed by s stray bullet in a gangland shootout at a local speakeasy. When Hattie confronts the mayor, a political hack running for re-election, at a campaign event about closing the illegal operations down, he brushes her off as only a woman. Other women at the rally draft her as a rival candidate with best-friend Ivy as campaign manager and female voters go on a "Lysistrata"-like parlor, bedroom, and bath strike in order to insure Hattie's election. Unfortunately, Hattie does not know that her daughter Myrtle's boyfriend, a reformed but wounded hoodlum, is hiding out in her attic. Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

WB Shop / Warner Archive

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 July 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Election orageuse See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Ivy Higgins: Put that foot down where it belongs!
Peter Higgins: If I did, you wouldn't be able to sit down for months!
See more »

Crazy Credits

This story is dedicated to women - who have been fighting for their rights ever since Adam and Eve started the loose-leaf system. See more »

Connections

References The Stolen Jools (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

In the Gloaming
(1877) (uncredited)
Music by Annie Fortescue Harrison
Lyrics by Meta Orred
Played on an organ and sung offscreen by an unidentified female
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Cute but familiar
7 August 2008 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Polly Moran loves her new-found prestige as a political organizer. Though she's definitely got a low-level position, she has great visions of grandeur. However, the man she's supporting as mayor isn't doing a particularly good job, as he turns a blind eye to bootleggers and the crime associated with them. It all comes to a head when there is a shooting in one of these dives and someone familiar to Moran and her friend Marie Dressler is killed. So at the next political rally when the mayor asks for questions, Dressler confronts him about the bootleggers. He makes many excuses but the bottom line is that he won't do anything--at which point Marie makes an impassioned speech and is roundly applauded. Giddy with success, Polly urges Marie to run against the incumbent mayor--at which point the sexist men gang up on poor Marie. However, instead of giving up, the ladies dig in their heels for a battle of the sexes.

When I watched this Marie Dressler-Polly Moran film, I couldn't help but recognize the familiar plot. That's because in the television age this same plot was recycled many times--the most notable being on "The Andy Griffith Show" when Ellie ran for office and the men of Mayberry were against her simply because she was a female. You certainly can't blame the makers of this film, as the idea was fresh in 1931! The film isn't especially deep and won't change your life but it excels on a very simple level--it's fun light entertainment. Dressler and Moran made eight movies together and the surviving films from the series are all very pleasant and fun thanks to good writing and especially to Dressler's wonderful screen presence and charm. The only serious negative about the film is Roscoe Ates--a guy whose claim to fame in films was his stuttering schtick. Not only wasn't this "politically correct", but also wore out its welcome long before this film.


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