My Bill

My Bill with Kay Francis.  The Colbrooks are descendants of the founder of their New England town, but widow Mary Colbrook (Kay Francis) has made some bad spending decisions and worse investments with her share of the family fortune.  She has kept her money problems secret from her (mostly) aristocratic kids. When the stores all begin to refuse credit and the piano gets repossessed, the older kids are indignant and outraged toward their mother for mismanaging their entitlement.  Only youngest son Bill (Dickie Moore) sides with Mom (who he always calls 'Sweetheart') and offers to get a job to pitch in.  The three older kids decide to move in with their excessively proper aunt, who has always disliked Mary and wishes to 'properly' raise the kids.  Bill's kindness and go-get-'em attitude eventually lead to a reversal of fortune, and harmony is restored.

I was surprised that a major plot point of this movie was that Bill was assumed to be another man's child.  It was also a little unusual that the deceased husband was not remembered as a paragon of virtue, but rather as a jealous and spiteful man. Kay Francis's character was unreasonably optimistic but still likeable.

Dickie Moore would become famous for giving Shirley Temple her first on-screen kiss in Miss Annie Rooney (1942).

For me this movie was all about familiar faces, and I realize that these faces are probably only familiar to me because of my MCMXXXVIII project:
The younger daughter was played by Bonita Granville, who also played the younger daughter in Merry We Live and again in Hard to Get.  The supposed other man was played by John Litel, who was in Comet Over Broadway, The Amazing Dr. Clitterhouse, Jezebel, A Slight Case of Murder, and Gold Is Where You Find It.  The elder daughter was played by Anita Louise, who was in The Sisters and Marie Antionette.  The older son was Bobby Jordan, a Dead End Kid who was in Angels With Dirty Faces, Crime School, and A Slight Case of Murder.

Bill starts a newspaper stand


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