The Talk of the Town


Nora, Leopold, and Michael occupy the same house. Nora is the homeowner, Michael is an uptight lawyer renting a room, and Leopold is an ex-convict hiding in the attic. A complicated outcome is highly probable.  

Nora (Jean Arthur) is a nervous sweet presence and tries to accommodate both men. They have difficult personalities and are wanted by the government for different reasons. Leopold is suspected of burning a factory mill. And the supercilious Michael is being chosen for a position at the Supreme court. And both are slowly falling in love with Nora.

Where this is all going is not easy to predict. But an intelligent drama is not always expected in a comedy.  There is a challenge of ideologies between both men. Leopold insists that living the American lifestyle is the only way to be educated about the legal system. The lawyer, who is in the process of writing a book, is a hard man who bases all judgments on facts.

In the meantime, the building romance is there but not strongly evident. Ronald Colman plays the lawyer Michael Lightcap with a desire of having his own way and a lot of fastidiousness. And Cary Grant as Leopold is a tough clear thinker. The film directed by George Stevens and a screen play by Dale Van Every, Irwin Shaw, Sidney Buchman does not contain the frequent laughter of a good comedy but it is fun and entertaining in its own unique way.