Alongside The Women and Dance, Girl, Dance, one of the great sassy-women comedy-dramas of the '30s. Taken from the stage success by Kaufman and Ferber, it's a bitchy, pacy slice of sociology that throws together a bunch of aspiring actresses in a theatrical boarding house, and watches them interact with lecherous producers (Menjou, marvellous), boyfriends, and most of all each other. The casting is perfect: Hepburn as the Bryn Mawr upper crust type determinedly slumming it, Rogers (in her first bid as a serious actress) as the no-nonsense girl-next-door, and Leeds as the frail, hypersensitive thesp with real talent who introduces a touch of melodrama into the proceedings. Individuals and darker moments apart, however, it's the crackling ensemble pieces that remain in the memory, expertly timed by La Cava's civilised, generous direction, and located in lovingly authentic sets beautifully shot by Robert de Grasse.
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