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Directed by Victor Fleming

United States 1933 96 mins. In English

Under the leadership of the tragic figure Irving Thalberg, by 1933 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer was the house of Hollywood glamour, producing sophisticated, slick films that often dealt with the lives of the upper classes—which makes Bombshell a strange case. It’s a portrait of a gilded woman, the wildly successful movie star Lola Burns (Jean Harlow), as she navigates the machinations of her scheming publicist (Lee Tracy) and a large family that seems to want nothing from her but money. She runs away into the arms of an aristocratic baron (Franchot Tone), with whom she wants to adopt a baby. Will she be able to stay out of the limelight long enough to settle down? For all of MGM’s glitz, Bombshell comes across as pure, simple comedic delight, shot through with a thread of humanity that emerges from the infighting and wisecracking.