Three Loves Has Nancy is one of the funniest most enjoyable classic comedies I have seen. From beginning to end I was so entertained and had such a good time watching it.
The film starts off with Malcolm Niles (Robert Montgomery) planning how he wants to propose to his girlfriend Vivien. He rehearses all the things he plans to do such as shutting the lights off and how the food is to be brought out. Unfortunately Vivien arrives with her mother and completely ruins Malcolm’s night. The mother says she heard her daughter and Malcolm were engaged and wanted to see what he looked like. Now Malcolm is freaked out he desperately wants out of the relationship. He is a writer and goes to his publisher Bob Hanson (Franchot Tone) to have him sent out on a book signing tour across the country.
Nancy Briggs (Janet Gaynor) goes to one of the signings with her mother. She tells Malcolm she does not plan on reading his book and totally throws him for a loop. Nancy’s grandmother like Malcolm and even invites him to Nancy’s wedding that night. In the middle of the signing he receives a cable from Bob that Vivian and her mother have left New York.
Nancy’s fiancé George has skipped town. He just left her a note saying he is in New York City. She thinks he is in trouble and not with another woman like the rest of her family thinks. Her grandfather gives her money to go find George. Malcolm is on the same train Nancy gets on to travel to the city. She drives Malcolm crazy especially when she thinks she leaves her pocketbook behind in a store. Being a nice guy Malcolm goes to try to find the bag in the store the train leaves the station. Once in the city, Nancy goes to the place where George worked. She finds out from the manager that George is believed to have stolen from a customer. She refuses to believe he did it on purpose he must be in some trouble.
Unfortunately Vivian has come back to New York once she found out Malcolm was coming back from his tour. Bob is not happy about seeing her at all and neither is Malcolm when he finally arrives home. His butler tells him there is a young woman crying in his bedroom. Nancy has come to see him. She has genuinely lost her bag this time someone stole it at the Missing Person’s Bureau. Malcolm goes to kick Nancy out but lets her stay when he hears Vivian say to a friend she and Malcolm will be announcing their engagement soon. He tells his former girlfriend about Nancy when they both hear Nancy and the maid arguing. The maid did not know she was a real guest and tried to kick her out of the bed. Nancy sees Bob who is literally crazy drunk (he was thinking there as a bird in the house and he was trying to catch it) and brings him his room on the other side of the apartment. When Bob and Nancy leave Vivian tries to make Malcolm jealous by calling another man that she will be over soon. Malcolm is over the moon that she is going to see the other man.
The next morning Nancy makes Malcolm a nice big breakfast. He asks where his cook has gone and she says she let the cook go because he was not saving any money on the food he was buying. Malcolm is now cranky he does not want any breakfast at all. Bob comes by. He tells Nancy to move into his place. She cooks for him and he cannot get enough. Malcolm comes over to Bob’s. He is writing a story based off Nancy. He finds she is helpful with bouncing his ideas about the characters and storyline off of. Bob keeps calling about what he wants for dinner. Malcolm gets mad at his friend and he tells him he is taking Nancy out for dinner. He does take her out so they can write up some more of the story. Over dinner she tells him that the whole time she has been with him and Bob she has not thought about George.
Bob is so crazy about Nancy he wants to marry her. Malcolm thinks Bob is crazy and has him go see their old college roommate who has become a shrink. He gets Bob to go by blackmailing him that he will send out notices to find George and he will never see Nancy again. Needless to say the plan backfires especially because to “cure” him will take two years. When he gets home Bob calls his family and Nancy’s family to come to the city to see them get married. When the families arrive there is a class scuffle between them. To make the scene ten times crazier George arrives out of nowhere. Nancy confesses she does not love either Bob or George she loves someone else.
The last scene is of Nancy and Bob on a train after their wedding.
All three main actors were absolutely fantastic. Janet Gaynor was ridiculously adorable and wonderful. No other actress could have played the part of Nancy Briggs so perfectly. Gaynor made playing the character who is naïve but know what she wants and is very caring seem so effortless. I loved seeing Robert Montgomery be so flustered. He is usually plays cool, charming characters and here his character did not know what to feel or how to act to this woman who just randomly came into his life. Franchot Tone I am liking more and more whenever I see him in a film. I liked how he played Bob towards the end when he is crazy in love with Nancy. Gaynor, Montgomery, and Tone were all perfect together
Three Loves Has Nancy is one of those classic comedies that should be more well known. It is not a perfect comedy (even though Franchot Tone is great in this his character was not really needed as much as he was and the story is a bit uneven) but is just fun to sit through. I cannot wait to own Three Loves Has Nancy on DVD eventually.