Sara Allgood

Storm in a Teacup (1937)

Storm in a Teacup 1937

Vickie Gow (Vivien Leigh) is the daughter of Provost Willie Gow (Cecil Parker).  Willie is in the midst of campaigning to be nominated for a seat on the Town Council.  When journalist Frank Burdon (Rex Harrison) goes to a meeting to interview Willie, he sits near Vickie and accidentally makes a bad impression on her when he makes some disparaging remarks about her father.  During Frank’s interview with Willie, he witnesses Frank being very cold to Honoria Hegarty (Sara Allgood), a poor woman whose dog the city has taken away because she can’t afford to license it.  Even Vickie thinks Willie’s behavior was uncalled for.

Rather than publish the interview as planned, Frank decides to make his story all about how horribly Willie has treated Honoria.  After the newspaper hits the stands, the town overwhelmingly sides with Honoria and Willie becomes a joke.  When Willie tries to deliver a speech, a riot nearly breaks out and the crowd barks at him until he leaves the stage.  Naturally, Willie isn’t very fond of Frank, which makes things difficult for Frank and Vickie since they have fallen in love with each other.  Willie wants Frank to sign a retraction for his article, but Frank refuses and the whole thing escalates into an all-out war between them.

During an important dinner at Willie’s house, Frank lets a huge bunch of dogs loose into the house, costing Willie his nomination. Willie has Frank arrested, they end up going to court, and it’s expected that Vickie will be called to testify.  Just as her time comes, Vickie announces that she can’t testify because she is married to Frank.  This isn’t true, but Willie has to go along with it or Vickie will be tried for perjury.  Willie puts a stop the whole trial and is able to get back to work in politics while Vickie and Frank actually do get married.

I’m glad I decided to check out Storm in a Teacup.  It’s a very British film, so if you enjoy British humor, it’s a pretty entertaining movie.  It was interesting to see Vivien Leigh and Rex Harrison together, both of them were fairly early in their film careers at the time.  They do a fine job in it and Cecil Parker made a very good adversary for Rex Harrison.  Simply put, it’s a pleasant little movie.  Smart, witty, and worth watching if only to see two stars on their way up in the world.