Hands Across the Table

Overview

After nearly a decade of nominal "leading lady" roles, Carole Lombard landed her first genuine starring vehicle with Hands Across the Table. Reasoning that the way to a man's heart is through his cuticles, Regi Allen (Carole Lombard) takes a job as a manicurist at a fancy barbershop, unabashedly admitting that she hopes to use this position to snag a rich husband. Sure enough, Regi's charms prove irresistable to Allen Macklyn (Ralph Bellamy) a wealthy and charming invalid, who knows that the girl is a golddigger ...
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Overview

After nearly a decade of nominal "leading lady" roles, Carole Lombard landed her first genuine starring vehicle with Hands Across the Table. Reasoning that the way to a man's heart is through his cuticles, Regi Allen (Carole Lombard) takes a job as a manicurist at a fancy barbershop, unabashedly admitting that she hopes to use this position to snag a rich husband. Sure enough, Regi's charms prove irresistable to Allen Macklyn (Ralph Bellamy) a wealthy and charming invalid, who knows that the girl is a golddigger but doesn't care. The other man in Regi's life is Theodore "Ted" Drew III (Fred MacMurray), who though born into a wealthy family is stone broke, and on the verge of marrying a rich debutante (Astrid Allwyn) to replenish his lost fortune. Hoping to briefly escape this fate and his other financial problems, Theodore hides out in Regi's apartment. It is, of course, a platonic relationship: Having been burned in the past, Regi doesn't want to get romantically entangled with a pauper, while Ted is already promised to someone else. But, as is often the case in 1930s comedies, things don't quite turn out the way that either Regi or Ted expect. Full of delightful, unexpected touches, Hands Across the Table proved to be a major boost for Carole Lombard's career, and didn't exactly do any harm to up-and-coming Fred MacMurray either.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
While it's not as well known as many other comedies from the same period, Hands Across the Table is a totally delightful, if inconsequential little movie. Although it's set in the world of high society, it's tone is definitely not that of the screwball comedy. Carole Lombard's Regi is too serious about money, and her determination to get it is too real for a screwball. Likewise, Fred MacMurray's Theodore Drew III may be matter-of-fact about his upcoming marriage of convenience, but the certain level of accepting resignation he brings to his situation would throw a screwball out of sync. Those looking for madcap fun among the rich may be made uncomfortable by Table's take on things, but the truth is Table makes it's own madcap fun -- and it's highly appealing. There's also a surprisingly deep vein of emotion beneath the surface; one cares about these characters almost as much as they care about themselves. Lombard gives one of her customarily rich performances, the kind that seem to come so easily to her that one takes them for granted. MacMurray is the real surprise; practically a kid, he's more animated than in many of his later films. He's engaging in a completely boyish way, yet still has an aura of masculinity about him. And the chemistry between the two leads is practically tangible. Throw in a very fine supporting turn from Ralph Bellamy and smart direction from Mitchell Leisen and you have a neglected little gem of a movie.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/12/1995
  • UPC: 096898250931
  • Original Release: 1935
  • Rating:

  • Source: Universal Studios
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Carole Lombard Regi Allen
Fred MacMurray Theodore Drew III
Ralph Bellamy Allen Macklyn
Astrid Allwyn Vivian Snowden
Ruth Donnelly Laura
Marie Prevost Nona
Joseph R. Tozer Peter
William Demarest Natty
Edward Gargan Pinky Kelly
Ferdinand Munier Miles, the Butler
Harold Minjir Valentine
Marcelle Corday Celeste, the French Maid
James Adamson Porter
Peter Allen Jewelry Clerk
Murray Alper Cab Driver
Sam Ash Maitre d'
Albert Conti Maitre d' in Speakeasy
Nell Craig Saleslady
Bess Flowers Diner
Dutch Hendrian Taxi Driver
Mary MacLaren Chambermaid
Jerry Mandy Headwaiter
Nelson McDowell Man in Nightshirt
Harold Miller Barber Customer
Edward Peil Sr.
Francis Sayles
Jerome Storm
Fred "Snowflake" Toones
Harold Williams
Rod Wilson Piano Player
Technical Credits
Mitchell Leisen Director
Travis Banton Costumes/Costume Designer
Sam Coslow Songwriter
Jean Delettre Songwriter
Herbert Fields Screenwriter
Frederick Hollander Songwriter
Norman Krasna Screenwriter
Vincent Lawrence Screenwriter
Mitchell Parish Songwriter
William Shea Editor
E. Lloyd Sheldon Producer
Ted Tetzlaff Cinematographer
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