William Powell, Kay Francis. Dir: William Dieterle
Jewel Robbery epitomizes everything that “Pre-Code Movie” means. There’s sex and drugs and I’ll wager that, had it existed at the time, it would have had rock and roll too. Only it would have been high-class rock and roll. We *are* talking about rich sophisticates, after all.
Kay (Guilty Hands [look it up]) Francis is married to a Viennese baron and William Powell is a jewelry store robber, things happen, credits role.
I believe this to be Kay’s best work, and I used to think there was no need to credit her for it, that the movie was good despite her. I didn’t like Kay Francis and there are so many things I could list here as to why, but I’m not going to because it’s not the way I run this blog. But I’ve seen her in a lot of movies now and I realize she really was a very good actress. And I love the fact that she was so popular even though she could only say the letter “r” when the right consonant was in front of it. Oh, and there’s this one dress she wears where I’m just sitting here wondering when it’s going to just fall off. Well, actually I only did that the first time I watched it because (SPOILER ALERT- avert your eyes!) it never does.
William Powell, on the other hand, MAKES this movie. He’s absolutely perfect. Suave, debonair, clever, funny, and so so charming. The thing that kills me about Powell is how he is not such a great looking guy, but he is so charming that he is completely attractive. There is no better actress to pair him with than Myrna Loy , but he does fine with Kay Francis. Because he can do no wrong.
Oh, and check out Powell’s apartment- it’s really cool. If I could live in any movie apartment ever created, I’m pretty sure I would choose this one.
This is not the most shocking pre-code movie ever made but it’s pretty up there. So if you want to be surprised at what they got away with in 1932, make sure to watch.