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Ever Since Eve (1937)

Lecherous bosses make it difficult for an attractive secretary to keep jobs, so she decides to appear considerably more homely in hopes of holding onto work.

Director:

Lloyd Bacon

Writers:

Lawrence Riley (screen play), Earl Baldwin (screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Marion Davies ... Marge Winton
Robert Montgomery ... Freddy Matthews
Frank McHugh ... 'Mabel' DeCraven
Patsy Kelly ... Sadie Day
Allen Jenkins ... Jake Edgall
Louise Fazenda ... Abbie Belldon
Barton MacLane ... Al McCoy
Marcia Ralston ... Camille Lansing
Frederick Clarke Frederick Clarke ... Alonzo (as Frederic Clarke)
Arthur Hoyt ... Hotel Manager
Mary Treen ... Employment Clerk
Harry Hayden ... President of the Purity League
Pierre Watkin ... Barton
John T. Murray ... Lowell
William B. Davidson ... Henderson (as William Davidson)
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Storyline

Marge is a capable secretary, but her bosses are more interested in her than her abilities. This causes her to be frequently unemployed. To get a job, she changes her look to make herself unattractive. This gets her work with a writer named Freddy, who has a deadline fast approaching for his new book. Unfortunately, Freddy takes every opportunity not to work on the book and even falls for Marge when he sees her as she really looks. But as the unattractive secretary, he barely notices her and she tries everything to get him to complete his book on time. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

22 million moviegoers are reading the nationally syndicated serialization every day for 21 days as part of the big Cosmopolitan backing for this joyous hit from WARNER BROS. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 July 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Desde os Tempos de Eva See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First film of Paul Stewart. See more »

Connections

Featured in Breakdowns of 1938 (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

I Know Now
(1937) (uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Played when Freddie is asked about his new book
See more »

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User Reviews

 
This movie is a gem
4 August 2009 | by shane_604See all my reviews

Many screwball comedies of the 30's and 40's are regular fixtures on the TV movie circuit, so, that you might know movies like It Happened One Night or Bringing Up Baby almost by heart they've been on so often. I've seen Ever Since Eve a couple of times on TCM, but that is about the only place you'll run into it. Too bad! But at least it does keep the story somewhat fresh, as much of it works with an element of surprise. Still this is a well-made gem that deserves to be seen more often.

Short plot summary: Marge Winton is caught between eating 3 squares a day and preserving her virtue. She's a very good secretary who happens also to be very good-looking. Every time she lands a job the boss tries to land on her after hours and she has to quit. She happens upon a publishing company that insists that all their secretaries be unattractive and decides to disguise herself and take a job there. She ends up working for a playboy author who is not doing any work largely because of girlfriend Camille (Ralston) The publisher sets Marge to the task of making him write.

The cast is filled with veterans who provide predictable laughs and display well-honed comic chops. Patsy Kelly and Alan Jenkins are great fun as Marge's roommate and her loutish boy-friend. They keep the action moving and push the screwball accelerator down a notch when the story threatens to get too soppy. Likewise, Marcia Ralston with her jealous girlfriend sets a tempestuous tone that keeps us from thinking too hard and would explain Freddy Matthews' (Robert Montgomery) inability to get his life in gear. Anyone who's dated a psycho can relate. Montegomery, as usual, is smooth and bubbly as the boy hero. He played that role so often, he could no doubt play it in his sleep.

While most of the story can be seen coming there is a real surprise when Davies pulls off the transformation.

In contemporary movies, we've had several stars try this trick. It's almost a Hollywood stereotype. Most notably we've had Julia Robert's trying to convince us that she was the ugly duckling sister; Sandra Bulluck as an unattractive(?) cop; Gwyneth Paltrow donning a fat suit and Renee Zellweger actually gaining weight for the part. No one could possibly believe the first two examples, because gosh darn it they were just too good looking. The Bullock example is stunning, because she is in the top .001 percentile of attractive women on camera. The studios have never made her look unattractive. The last two succeeded sort of. Zellweger took on the frumpy role just as De Niro took on the weight in Raging Bull, she wasn't made-up she was. Paltrow is wearing a fat suit and carry's off the ploy, but this is a triumph of extreme make-up.

Davies pulls this off stunningly. Although it is but a wig, glasses and a change of clothes, it is thoroughly convincing. In fact, it is her acting chops that really pull this off, because she really takes on the manners and attitude of the plain girl and can just as easily switch back to the babe. When she tests it out for the first time on us and plumber Al, who is expecting the babe, we are already expecting her plain Jane disguise, but she exceeds our expectations. She could have easily slipped on to another movie set and played the frumpy secretary. Later on she even shows us the transformation from one to the other but it is still believable. She has brought the dual role to life much as Hoffman in Tootsie made us accept the dualism in his drag role. Really, the only thing that is hard to believe in this story is that Montegomery could actually write. Though, we can believe that Davies could get him to do it.

All in all this movie is unrelenting fun and a fine time waster.


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