If you’re not familiar with Ruth Chatterton, now’s the time to get familiar. While there may be good reason to not know Ruth, her work in some fantastic pre-code films in the 20’s and 30’s warrant attention. Those that paired her with husband George Brent were always particularly steamy.
One film most memorable is FEMALE, starring opposite hubby George. As in most of the pre-codes Hollywood goes to town with risqué topics- here we see the successful career women, unable to keep a man of her own, and as a result goes through them like water. Thus many a young engineer comes through her car company only to be spotted, tried out, and promptly disposed of. On a whim, and not wanting to be known for her success, Ruth takes to the town and runs into George. They flirt, and play and at the end of the night separate. Of course the next morning when he starts as the wonder boy engineer at her company, and suddenly doesn’t want anything to do with her. He knows this game, but she’s never been turned down before. The problem—she doesn’t really know how to be chased, and a man, well..likes to feel like a man. And so begins her transformation into a somewhat helpless lily in order to snatch the man she wants. But can she maintain the farce long enough to secure the man, or will her true nature get the better of her?