Stage Door (1937) starring Katharine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers, Lucille Ball, Ann Miller, Eve Arden
Plot synopsis of Stage Door
In Stage Door, Terry Randall (Katherine Hepburn), rich society beauty, has decided to see if she can break into the Broadway theater scene without her family connections. She goes to live in a theatrical boarding house and finds her life caught up with those of the other inmates and the ever-present disappointment that theatrical hopefuls must live with. Her smart-mouth roommate, Jean (Ginger Rogers), is approached by a powerful producer for more than just a role. And Terry’s father has decided to give her career the shove by backing a production for her to star in, in which she’s sure to flop. But his machinations hurt more than just Terry.
Editorial Review of Stage Door, courtesy of Amazon.com essential video
This one’s all about the ladies. In this absolutely terrific 1937 gem, a Manhattan boardinghouse for aspiring actresses houses an amazing roster of golden-era performers — some of whom, like their characters, were just breaking in. It’s hard to say who’s in best form here: Katharine Hepburn in blueblood mode, Ginger Rogers streetwise, Andrea Leeds suffering, Lucille Ball and Ann Miller impossibly young, and Eve Arden being, well, splendidly Eve Ardenish. The sassy comedy and sober life lessons are wonderfully mixed by the underrated director Gregory La Cava (My Man Godfrey), who captures the brashness of — 30s female chatter in a much pleasanter way than the more famous The Women. Hepburn’s sublime attempts to wrestle with the line about calla lilies being in bloom will make you smile long after the movie’s over. — Robert Horton