The Gay Divorcee is about a woman named Mimi (Ginger Rogers) who wishes to get a divorce seeing as how she's been married for two years to a geologist who makes no effort whatsoever to actually see her. She journeys to London with her Aunt Hortense (Alice Brady) to visit a lawyer in London (Edward Everett Horton) who informs her that London laws require the husband to sign off on the divorce. To aid her in her wishes, however, the lawyer sets her up in seaside hotel to be caught with a hired correspondent so that her husband would indeed wish for a divorce. Meanwhile, a friend of the lawyer Guy Holden (Fred Astaire) had developed an infatuation with Mimi on her initial trip to London, but he's unaware of her marriage or her plans for divorce. While at the seaside hotel, Mimi mistakes Guy Holden for the correspondent hired to pretend to tarnish her wedding vows, still unbeknownst to Mr. Holden. The rest of the plot takes off from there and hits all of the notes you'd expect it to, but even though The Gay Divorcee has all the trappings of a cliched romantic comedy, it's actually very well executed.
|Guy's facial response to Mimi's sudden change in attitude.|
Overall, The Gay Divorcee is a solid second film for Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. It set the precedence for their romances on film. The movie has good music, good dancing, and good laughs, and its too leads have a great deal of chemistry. Flying Down To Rio was the movie that introduced the duo to the world, but I think The Gay Divorcee was the first indication that they would be legends of the silver screen.
My Rating (out of 5):