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The River of Romance (1929)

Mississippi, 1830's. Tom Rumsford comes back to Magnolia Landing, his parents'estate. Having been brought up in the North by Quaker relatives, he just hates violence and accordingly refuses... See full summary »

Director:

Richard Wallace

Writers:

Ethel Doherty (screenplay), Joseph L. Mankiewicz (titles) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Charles 'Buddy' Rogers ... Tom Rumford
Mary Brian ... Lucy Jeffers
June Collyer ... Elvira Jeffers
Henry B. Walthall ... General Jeff Rumford
Wallace Beery ... General Orlando Jackson
Fred Kohler ... Captain Blackie
Natalie Kingston ... Mexico
Walter McGrail ... Major Patterson
Anderson Lawler ... Joe Patterson
Percy Haswell ... Madame Rumford (as Mrs. George Fawcett)
George Reed ... Rumbo
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Storyline

Mississippi, 1830's. Tom Rumsford comes back to Magnolia Landing, his parents'estate. Having been brought up in the North by Quaker relatives, he just hates violence and accordingly refuses a duel. As this is the only way in the South to settle a dispute between gentlemen, Tom's father is so infuriated by his behavior that Tom has no other choice but leave. Away from Magnolia Landing, Tom learns bravery and returns seven years later as "the notorious Colonel Blake", the terror of the Lower Mississippi... Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

AN IDYLL OF THE SOUTH WITH A SPARKLING MUSICAL SCORE OF PLANTATION MELODIES AND ROMANTIC LOVE BALLADS (Print ad- Sunday Tribune,((Providence, R.I.)) 11 August 1929) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 June 1929 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Le célèbre Capitaine Blake See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

(1923). Stage Play: Magnolia. Comedy. Written by Booth Tarkington. Directed by Ira Hards. Liberty Theatre: 27 Aug 1923- Oct 1923 (closing date unknown/40 performances). Cast: James Bradbury (as "Joe Patterson"), Martha Bryan-Allen (as "Lucy"), Leo Carrillo (as "Tom"), Barrington Carter (as "Rumbo"), John Harrington (as "Blackie"), J.K. Hutchinson (as "General Rumford"), Elizabeth Patterson (as "Madame Rumford"), Jack Rutherford [credited as John Rutherford] (as "Major Patterson"), Phyllis Schuyler (as "Elvira"), Malcolm Williams (as "General Orlando Jackson"), Ethel Wilson (as "Mexico"). Produced by Alfred E. Aarons. Note: Filmed by Paramount Pictures as The River of Romance (1929). See more »

Connections

Version of The Fighting Coward (1924) See more »

Soundtracks

My Lady Love
(uncredited)
Written by Sam Coslow and Leo Robin
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User Reviews

Just Plain Awful
1 September 2009 | by drednmSee all my reviews

Unfortunately, this is one of the worst acted films I've ever seen.

This 1929 production of Booth Tarkington's play MAGNOLIA has just about everything go wrong. The writing and direction are atrocious, the sets are incredibly cheap looking, and the actors wallow in performances that range from stage posing to undecipherable blathering.

Buddy Rogers stars as a southern boy schooled in Philadelphia. He returns to his daddy's plantation totally ignorant of Southern ways. He's engaged to the silly and simpering Elvira (June Collyer) although her younger sister (played by Mary Brian) is in love with him. Daddy (Henry B. Walthall) seems happy with everything until a pair of brothers (Walter McGrail and Anderson Lawler), who are happily pursuing a state-wide feud, are insulted when Elvira refuses one's advances. They demand a duel with Rogers, who refuses because it's dumb. He's chased away and branded a coward.

Rogers shows up somewhere on the Mississippi in a gambling den run by Wallace Beery, who sports an eye patch because his ex wife "got religion" one day and chucked a hymn book at him. The local chanteuse (Natalie Kingston) swishes around singing amid the many fights that break out. When Fred Kohler arrives and threatens Beery, Rogers jumps to his defense and deflects a dagger with a breadboard. Beery and Rogers become friends.

When Rogers, now sporting a mustache, returns to the plantation for Brian's debutante ball, he finds that the Patterson brothers are deeply in debt and swindling daddy because they now live there, one having married the simpering Elvira. But things have changed even more, and when the bullying brothers challenge Rogers (with an assumed name) to a duel, he now accepts. The brothers back down and all is well in the world.

The actors labor under bad direction, bad recording technology, and an inability to hold their fake accents. Mary Brian comes off best although she seems to be patterning her performance on Mary Pickford's in COQUETTE. Buddy Rogers and Wallace Beery actually seem to be trying hard here, but have too many handicaps to deal with. Poor Henry B. Walthall seems totally lost as do June Collyer, and Anderson Lawler. Natalie Kingston, playing the mulatto named Mexico, and Walter McGrail as the older brother are just plain hideous.

Interestingly, Leo Carrillo starred in the 1923 Broadway production, which ran for only 40 performances.


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