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One of the elegant Leisen's very best, with a lovely performance from Goddard as the 18th century London slum wench who gatecrashes society after being painted as a lady by Gainsborough. The tartly witty script (from a novel by Rosamund Marshall) owes something to Pygmalion as the grubby waif is taken up by Milland's raffish young man-about-town and taught the secrets of speech and deportment by his aunt. But tone and mood come closer to Renoir's Diary of a Chambermaid, blending sharp cynicism with shafts of tenderness as Milland seeks to capitalise on his creation, she sacrifices herself to save him from debtor's prison, and a couple of profitable marriages intervene before romance has its way. Stunningly shot by Daniel Fapp, scrupulously authentic in period detail (gorgeous sets and costumes), it's wholly delightful.

By: TM

Release details

Duration: 104 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Mitchell Leisen
Screenwriter: Darrell Ware, Karl Tunberg
Cast: Paulette Goddard
Ray Milland
Patric Knowles
Reginald Owen
Cecil Kellaway
Constance Collier
Sara Allgood
Eric Blore