Trouble for Two (1936)

Article 2277 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 6-16-2007
Posting Date: 11-6-2007
Directed by J. Walter Ruben
Featuring Robert Montgomery, Rosalind Russell, Frank Morgan

A prince goes to London incognito in order to think over getting married to a princess from Irania. However, he finds that there is a conspiracy to have him assassinated, and he gets involved with a suicide club.

I’ve seen two other versions of the Robert Louis Stevenson story (“The Suicide Club”) that provided the source for this movie. The other two were both as segments in anthology movies, and I’m assuming that, due to their similarity, that they are much closer to the original story (which I’ve not read) than this one is. Those other two versions were close enough to horror that I didn’t bother to contest the classification, but this one layers on an elaborate attempted assassination storyline that makes radical changes to the story, and this, combined with the fairly lighthearted feel of the movie, strips much of the horror element away, and I find it very borderline. On its own terms, it is a very entertaining movie, with Robert Montgomery dashing and adventuresome, Rosalind Russell quite lovely, and Frank Morgan stealing the show as the twittery colonel assigned to protect the prince. It might qualify as borderline fantasy, as I believe neither of the countries from which the prince and princess hail do exist. And you should be able to figure out the identity of the mysterious woman on the ship long before anyone else does.


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