Saturday, March 2, 2013

I Like Your Nerve (1931)



I think I have finally seen an old Hollywood film where the title actually fits the plot. I never thought I would see the day! I Like Your Nerve is a very fitting title for this film where Douglas Fairbanks Jr. actively pursues Loretta Young in any way he can even though there are several people in their way of being together.
            Larry O’Brien (Fairbanks Jr.) is roaming around South America. He has apparently gotten into some kind of trouble and has been kicked out of that country into another. While waiting at the gate Larry sees a beautiful in the backseat of a car. He follows the car and crashes the gate into San Pedro. The guards immediately surround his car and all Larry does is laugh.
            Larry is thrown in a local jail but his lawyer friend is able to get him out. He drives to a roadside dive for a drink when he sees the car with the beautiful woman in the backseat. She pretends to hide her face in disgust behind her umbrella but smiles to herself. The car drives off down the road. Larry asks one of the workers at the dive who the young woman is. The worker tells him her name is Diana Forsythe (Young), her stepfather is the Minister of Finance and she is set to marry a much older American man in the next few days. The worker adds that with all this it will be impossible to see Diana in person she has so many people around her. With those words Larry now makes it his mission to be alone with Diane. He comes up with the idea to break classes from the dive across a stretch of road to pop the tires on Diane’s car. The plane works and somehow manages to be alone with Diane. Larry offers to drive her home. Diane sits in the back so Larry sits in the back with her until she moves to the front with him. He brings her back to her house and is introduced to her stepfather. The stepfather says he will send Larry an invitation to the wedding and Larry responds that he will not need one because he will be the one marrying Diane. Before he leaves the property Larry incessantly blows his car horn waiting for Diane to come to the window. She does and smiles at him. Diane finds that she likes his flirtatious attention.
            Diane is very unhappy. She does not want to marry Clive Lattimer who is so much older than her and barely pays attention to her. She finds that she likes Larry and thinks of him all through a party that night. At the party is Larry’s lawyer friend Archie. Diane asks Archie about his friend. Meanwhile, Larry is trying to get into the party but he is turned away at the door. He manages to fool with Diane’s chauffer and takes his place. Diane wants to leave the party she is so bored. Larry drives up and takes Diane away down to a lake. Diane tries to get away; Larry says he has the keys. She gets mad at him and he loves it.
            Dressed as the chauffer Larry goes to Diane’s stepfather to tell him he wants to marry her. The stepfather confesses the only reason he is marrying Diane off to Lattimer is because the old man will give him twenty thousand dollars which he desperately needs to balance the country’s finances. Diane sees Larry walking out of the house. She is nervous thinking her stepfather will do something to Larry. She tells her stepfather that if he does anything to Larry she not marry Lattimer no matter the consequences.
            Larry manages to get Diane out of the country and con Lattimer out of his twenty thousand dollars. As with all happy love endings in old Hollywood, Larry and Diane get married.
            I loved Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Loretta Young together. They had great chemistry and I think that comes down to the fact that they were young and fresh faced and that Fairbanks Jr. was charming and Young could be a tough chick with a soft side. I am not sure if this was their first film pairing together I know they made several other films together in the thirties. I cannot wait to watch those.
            I Like Your Nerve is not one of the greatest films. The plot of a young girl marrying an older man she does not want to marry and meets a younger man she falls in love with has been done to death but here it is sweet and cute because Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Loretta young were perfect together. It gets a little silly with the secondary characters. Watch I Like Your Nerve if you are a fan Loretta Young and Douglas Fairbanks Jr. The film is not available on YouTube I had it recorded from TCM I think from a few months ago.