She Had to Choose

She Had to Choose

Director: Ralph Cedar

Cast: Larry "Buster" Crabbe, Isabel Jewell, Sally Blane

     
 

Sally Bates (Isabel Jewell) is a young Texas woman trying to make it to Hollywood on too little money and driving a car that's too old. She gets stranded one night, nearly out of money and gas, in a college town where she meets Bill Cutler (Larry "Buster" Crabbe), a poor-but-honest and hard-working campus hunk -- he's a football hero and also runs the local drive-in… See more details below

Overview

Sally Bates (Isabel Jewell) is a young Texas woman trying to make it to Hollywood on too little money and driving a car that's too old. She gets stranded one night, nearly out of money and gas, in a college town where she meets Bill Cutler (Larry "Buster" Crabbe), a poor-but-honest and hard-working campus hunk -- he's a football hero and also runs the local drive-in restaurant for his mother (Maidel Turner). They take a light-hearted liking to each other and are thrust together even more forcefully when she helps break up a robbery. Sally ends up being taken into Bill's mother's home and working at the drive-in; but Bill is always spending time with his longtime steady Clara Berry (Sally Blane), who's got a lot of money and a lot of interest in Bill -- she and her family have big plans for him, when they marry, and Sally doesn't want to get in the way. She ends up going out with Clara's brother Jack (Regis Toomey), whose fun-loving nature masks a drinking problem and a mean and reckless streak. A series of misunderstandings ensues, culminating in Bill beating Jack to death -- despite the evidence that it was, at worst, manslaughter, the district attorney (Wallis Clark) does his best to prove murder.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
She Had To Choose packs an awful lot of plot into its 65 minute running time -- a girl driving cross-country (which, in the days before the interstate, was a serious challenge), a robbery attempt, personal and romantic misunderstandings, a mismatched marriage, a death, and an inquest and investigation; and in the middle of all of that, it even manages to find room for Larry "Buster" Crabbe, playing the hero, to show off some of his aquatic prowess in a scene at a pool. This is the kind of programmer that helped to make B-movies the most appealing part of a lot of double-bills in the 1930's and early 1940's -- it is a comedy, to be sure, but in a manner that anticipates the Dead End Kids and East Side Kids movies of the late thirties and early forties, it's laced with just enough drama and violence so that it keeps the viewer on his or her toes. Not that it's especially good in any notable way, but it's never dull and Fuzzy Knight gets to show off his comedic skills to great advantage, and Arthur Stone provides a nice, folksy/comic bookend to the story as well, as a kindly service station owner. Isabel Jewell sometimes has to stretch her acting muscles a bit to show the more innocent side of the character that she's playing, and Sally Blane would seem to have been better suited for Jewell's role, but there's nothing here that stretches credibility to the breaking point; similarly, there are no cinematic revelations -- just an hour or so of entertainment, which is what people were paying their money to see in 1934. And today the period details, plus Regis Toomey's performance as a dangerous fun-loving drunk, make this worth a look.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/26/2009
UPC:
0089218583192
Original Release:
1934
Rating:
NR
Source:
Alpha Video
Region Code:
0
Presentation:
[B&W]
Time:
1:00:00
Sales rank:
83,486

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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- She Had to Choose
2. Chapter 1 [:05]
3. Chapter 2 [:05]
4. Chapter 3 [:05]
5. Chapter 4 [:05]
6. Chapter 5 [:05]
7. Chapter 6 [:05]

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