6.6/10
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Those Were the Days! (1940)

A middle-aged couple think back to their college days and courtship.

Director:

Theodore Reed (as Jay Theodore Reed)

Writers:

Don Hartman (screenplay), George Fitch (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
William Holden ... P.J. 'Petey' Simmons
Bonita Granville ... Martha Scroggs
Ezra Stone Ezra Stone ... Alexander 'Allie' Bangs
Judith Barrett ... Mirabel Allstairs
Vaughan Glaser Vaughan Glaser ... Judge Malachi Scroggs
Lucien Littlefield ... Professor Sillicocks
Richard Denning ... Briggs
Phillip Terry ... Ransom
Tom Rutherford ... Sam Byers
Aldrich Bowker ... Judge Squire Jennings
James Seay ... Andrews
Douglas Kennedy ... Allen
John Laing John Laing ... Saunders (as John Laird)
John Hartley ... Whipple
Mark Roberts ... Allison (as Robert Scott)
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Storyline

A middle-aged couple think back to their college days and courtship.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...AND THOSE NIGHTS WERE THE NIGHTS, TOO! (original poster-all caps) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 July 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

At Good Old Siwash See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good Old Siwash College
25 April 2012 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Those Were The Days marked William Holden's fourth film since Golden Boy and his first starring role in a Paramount picture. As they were the studio that discovered him, Paramount was finally getting a return on the money they invested in him. Holden had one of the more unusual contract agreements in Hollywood, he was split down the middle between Paramount and Columbia, the price he paid for Columbia using him as a complete unknown in his first starring film Golden Boy.

The film is narrated by another cast member who is given aged makeup as is Holden and leading lady Bonita Granville. The story of their meeting and courtship is told when both were students at a most progressive university in 1904, Siwash College which was daringly coed.

From his first moment on campus, Bill Holden sees himself as a big man on it. He's quite the campus cutup at Siwash, but a real bad bit of business culminating with him stealing an electric streetcar and running it off the tracks and crashing it into a building. He gets before the stern town judge Vaughn Glaser and now what to do before Glaser curtails his academic career.

Answer, start putting the moves on Bonita Granville the judge's daughter who goes to Siwash and who Holden barely gave a passing glance before. I think you know where this is going and you'd be right, especially since the film is told in flashback.

Paramount did a good job in recreating the college atmosphere of the Teddy Roosevelt era. I was waiting for Frank Merriwell to show up with tales of his athletic exploits that seemed all that was missing.

Radio's Henry Aldrich, Ezra Stone plays Holden's roommate and only real friend on the campus and there's a nice subplot involving Stone with coed Judith Barrett who has taken fraternity pins from several young men including him. And she wears them proudly like a decorated war hero. As this was the beginning of the last century I'm sure what she did to earn them was G-rated.

Paramount cast several of their young players as fraternity boys, those who did and didn't give their pins to Ms. Barrett. Among them are Richard Denning and Douglas Kennedy who would have some fair careers. But if you're not alert you'll miss Alan Ladd whose breakthrough would be coming in two years with This Gun For Hire at Paramount. If only someone had the presence of mind to give him some real screen time with William Holden with whom I'm he vied for roles at the White Mountain studio.

Those Were The Days is a pleasant nostalgic comedy/romance of a bygone era that did give Bill Holden's career a nice boost at the time.


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