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Hoopla (1933)

A hula dancer at a carnival sets out to seduce the son of the show's manager.


Frank Lloyd


Kenyon Nicholson (play), Bradley King (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Clara Bow ... Lou
Preston Foster ... Nifty Miller
Richard Cromwell ... Chris Miller
Herbert Mundin ... Hap Spissel
James Gleason ... Jerry
Minna Gombell ... Carrie
Roger Imhof Roger Imhof ... Colonel Gowdy
Florence Roberts ... Ma Benson
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Damorès Damorès ... Colonel Gowdy aka Colonel Cody (French Version) (voice)


A hula dancer at a carnival sets out to seduce the son of the show's manager.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


She Shakes Everything But Her Boy Friend. SHE'S MILD AS A TORNADO! She Has What "IT" Takes to Get What She Wants (Print Ad-Lewiston Morning Tribune,((Lewiston, Idaho)) 1 January 1934)









Release Date:

30 November 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gøglerliv See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fox Film Corporation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Final film of Clara Bow. See more »

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User Reviews

Clara Bow's farewell performance
31 May 2003 | by stwhiteSee all my reviews

Very few performers can take an ordinary or above average script and make the movie stand out and make you want to see it again. I think Clara Bow was one of the few actresses that had that ability- not just with this film (and this story arguably centers around the father-son characters, not Clara's), but many of the others throughout her career. Without Clara in the part of Lou, this is just an average pre-Code film that would have been long forgotten (they certainly weren't trying to put anything by the censors in this one- a skinnydipping scene, Clara undressing, and Nifty's girlfriend upset because she can't spend the night with him because he doesn't want his son to know- by 1935 the Hays Office would would not permit any of this on screen). Watching her seduce the naive son of the carnival barker was fun to watch, as was the scene when she gets busted by a cop and a father for conning a ring from another young man. Hoopla does provide an interesting glimpse into carney life and rail travel in the early 1930s. The supporting cast is fine, particularly Richard Cromwell as Nifty, but I think with a little more effort on the writing and direction this could have even better.

Although this may be one her better sound films, I wouldn't rate it at quite at the same level of Clara's best silent films, It and Mantrap, but it's still enjoyable. Clara clearly thrived in the silent environment and some have said that dialogue and the the constraints of the early sound stages restricted the uninhibited It girl. Maybe so, but I would argue that much of that can be attributed to the average material she was given to work with. This actress was capable of much more if she had been cast in better roles throughout her career. According to her biographer, Clara was not enthusiastic about making Hoopla, she just wanted to get it over with so she could fulfill her contract to Fox and retire. Regardless, if you are a Clara fan or just a fan of pre-Code films, odds are you will enjoy this one. I know I did and will watch Clara again and again!

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