5.7/10
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28 user 8 critic

Strange Interlude (1932)

Passed | | Drama | 14 June 1934 (France)
After Nina Leeds finds out that insanity runs in her husband's family, she has a love child with a handsome doctor and lets her husband believes the child is his.

Director:

Robert Z. Leonard (uncredited)

Writers:

Eugene O'Neill (from the play by), Bess Meredyth (dialogue continuity) | 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Norma Shearer ... Nina Leeds
Clark Gable ... Ned Darrell
Alexander Kirkland ... Sam Evans
Ralph Morgan ... Charlie Marsden
Robert Young ... Gordon as a Young Man
May Robson ... Mrs. Evans
Maureen O'Sullivan ... Madeline
Henry B. Walthall ... Professor Leeds
Mary Alden ... Maid
Tad Alexander ... Gordon as a Child
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Storyline

The thoughts that people think are never the same as the words they speak - and in this movie, we can hear the thoughts. Gordon Shaw was a flyer who was shot down and killed during WWI. Nina would have married him before he left, but her father forbade the marriage. Charlie is a friend, but Nina does not love him and he is too timid- too shy - to tell her the way that he feels about her. Sam is her husband and her love disappears after the ceremony when she finds out that there is mental illness in his family and that there can be no children. To have the child she wants, but cannot have with Sam, she has a secret affair with Ned, who wants her to leave Sam. Gordon is the result of the affair, but he does not know Ned is his real father. Nina continues to play with the emotions of all three men and devote herself only to Gordon. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 June 1934 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Strange Interval See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$654,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

When Maureen O'Sullivan first met Gable on the set, he was in his old man make-up. He asked her out on a horse-riding date, but thinking he was too old for her, she turned him down. Later when she was doing some voice-overs, she saw him without make-up and regretted her decision. Gabe never asked her out again. See more »

Goofs

After Charlie's last line in the film, a shadow of the boom microphone can be seen moving off the back of the wicker chair before the camera starts pulling back. See more »

Quotes

Sam Evans: How 'bout the old scout?
Charlie Marsden: Oh, he seemed fine, fellow. Yes, yes, he said he was having a gay time. When I saw him he was with a startling looking female. I gather he was quite involved.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Walt Disney Story (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Love's Old Sweet Song (Just a Song at Twilight)
(1884) (uncredited)
Music by J.L. Molloy
Lyrics by G. Clifton Bingham
Played as background music at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

occasionally effective
3 December 2012 | by mukava991See all my reviews

Eugene O'Neill's nine-act theatrical experiment created quite a stir in 1928, so it was inevitable that Hollywood would snap it up. The play's novelty was that the characters spoke their thoughts aloud in the manner of asides. On the stage, some of these speeches went on for quite some time while the other actors in the scene froze in place; on film they are reduced in length and pre-recorded so that while we hear the words we see the appropriate facial expressions on both the speaking and the listening actors. Nothing about these spoken thoughts expands our understanding of the thinkers in ways that good acting or deft direction couldn't have done just as well. The story, actually a saga, concerns a woman (Norma Shearer) unhinged by the death of her dashing aviator fiancé in the World War; she sets out to salvage her connection to this lost ideal man by marrying a lesser specimen, bearing his male child and naming it after the deceased. Along the way she learns from her mother-in-law (May Robson) that insanity runs in the husband's family. Convinced that this undesirable genetic trait will show up in her offspring, she aborts the child she is carrying and mates with a virile doctor friend (Clark Gable, who else?) to produce a healthy son which she then passes off as the husband's. Hard to believe? You bet. But it worked fascinatingly on the page, and perhaps even on the stage, but not on screen where it becomes just a series of mostly attractive talking heads. It is dramatically effective only in spots. Shearer is by turns compelling and strained. Clark Gable handles the material well until he encounters some overwrought plot contrivances near the end whereupon he is further hobbled by unconvincing old age makeup.


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