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No Man of Her Own

(1932 b 81')

En: 5 Ed: 6

Sparks fly in the only movie Gable and Lombard made together about a crooked gambler, who is persuaded to go straight.

Babe Stewart (Clark Gable) wins a big pot in a poker game during which Kay (Dorothy Mackaill) also finagles the big loser into promising her a $1000 coat. Later Babe gets angry at Charlie (Grant Mitchell), Vargas, and Kay for the way the scam was played. He tells Kay it's over between them, and she frantically threatens to talk. Babe is warned by the detective Collins (J. Farrell MacDonald) he knows his game. Babe decides to travel at random and takes a train to Glendale; there he sees Connie (Carole Lombard) and follows her into the library where she works. In spite of her resistance he flirts with her all day and eventually kisses her. He joins her in church and is invited to her family's home. Connie is going to Inspiration Lake, and Babe follows to her cabin. When he says he is going back to New York the next day, she asks him to take a chance on her. They flip a coin over getting married and spend the honeymoon on the train to New York.

Babe tells Charlie he'll keep Connie awhile and then give her some money; they plan a game. Babe bought Connie nice clothes and took her to the game. Meanwhile Collins can't get a witness because of the publicity. Connie wakes up Babe so that he can get to his "Wall Street job." He wakes up Charlie at 8:30; Charlie wants to bring Connie in on the game, but Babe says no. Babe gets a desk on Wall Street to spend his days 10-3. At a game Connie changes the hidden cards, and the guests win. Babe gets angry at her, and she asks him to change. Babe calls Charlie to plan a trip to South America. Babe gives Connie money. She thinks he could do something else and says she will wait for him. Babe wants Connie to go to Glendale and puts her on the train. At the dock he asks Vargas to send her cables once a week while he stays in New York. Babe goes to Collins and asks to do 90 days to clear his record. Charlie visits Babe in prison and tells of Connie in Glendale. In expectation of Babe's return, Connie and her mother move into his New York apartment. Kay visits Connie and tells her about Babe being in prison. Connie tells Charlie she knows; he explains how Babe must be in love because he turned himself in. In the final scene Babe comes and starts telling Connie all about his trip to South America.

Cynics may ridicule this story of a gambler, who is moved to reform his life by a small-town woman; but to me it seems realistic that such a man might realize the emptiness of the scams and truly want to change his life in order to live with a such a beautiful, kind, and intelligent woman.

Copyright © 1999 by Sanderson Beck

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