No Time for Comedy

S.N. Behrman's Broadway success starred Katharine Cornell. Rosalind Russell, in the same part, endows it with skill equal to that of her predecessor. Combined with a deftness for handling comedy and a class type of beauty which is plenty well demonstrated right here, Russell emerges as a player of unusual dignity and authority.

With:
James Stewart Rosalind Russell Genevieve Tobin Charles Ruggles Allyn Joslyn Louise Beavers

S.N. Behrman’s Broadway success starred Katharine Cornell. Rosalind Russell, in the same part, endows it with skill equal to that of her predecessor. Combined with a deftness for handling comedy and a class type of beauty which is plenty well demonstrated right here, Russell emerges as a player of unusual dignity and authority.

Stewart is pretty much the same Mr Smith who went to Washington. Cast in a role which was obviously tailored to his measure, he is topnotch in the characterization of the boyish playwright from the sticks who arrives in Manhattan with a map after detouring by way of the Grand Canyon because there was an excursion train running there.

All other members of the cast except one, Genevieve Tobin, are equally effective. Set to play the fluffy matron, such a skillfully-drawn characterization that only equally skillful acting can keep it on the right side of the fine line demarcating comedy from burlesque, Tobin frequently misses her footing. At least part of the blame must devolve on William Keighley, whose direction otherwise is equal to the story.

Stewart is a young newspaper reporter from the midwest who writes a play in which Russell is being starred on Broadway. The author is needed to make revisions, which for the first time brings him to the big city about which he has written so knowingly. He and Russell just naturally get entangled and enter on domestic bliss. In this state Stewart authors four comedy successes in four years when enter the villainess (Genevieve Tobin).

She convinces him he’s wasting time on comedy when he could be doing great plays and by swallowing this mouthwash he not only turns out a tragedy – in more ways than one – but thinks he has fallen for Tobin. Ever-loving wifey, in the meantime, has taken up with Tobin’s husband (Charlie Ruggles) as a matter of convenience.

No Time for Comedy

Production: Warner. Director William Keighley; Producer Hal B. Wallis, Robert Lord; Screenplay Julius J. Epstein, Philip G. Epstein; Camera Ernest Haller; Editor Owen Marks; Music Heinz Roemheld; Art Director John Hughes

Crew: (B&W) Extract of a review from 1940. Running time: 98 MIN.

With: James Stewart Rosalind Russell Genevieve Tobin Charles Ruggles Allyn Joslyn Louise Beavers

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