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A war veteran fights for honesty in the advertising game.
War veteran and fast-talking adman Victor Albee Norman returns to his home in New York City, determined to land a high-paying advertising job with the Kimberly Advertising Agency. During his interview with the head of the agency, the nervous Mr. Kimberly, Victor secures Kimberly's permission to take on the company's toughest client, Evans Beauty Soap, which is run by the mercurial Evan Llewellyn Evans. Victor likes the idea of Kimberly's new advertising campaign, in which twenty-five women, whose names have been selected from the social register, are to give testimonials for the soap in exchange for a donation to their favorite charity. The most important socialite on the list, Englishwoman Francis "Kay" X. Dorrance, is easily won over by Victor because she is in need of money, and she readily consents to have her publicity photograph taken. At the photographer's studio, Victor and a representative from the Kimberly agency argue over how Kay should appear, with Victor defending Kay's objections to being photographed in a sultry evening dress. The argument results in an emergency board meeting, during which Victor first becomes acquainted with Evans' unconventional business style. To illustrate his point that consumers can be shocked into paying attention to advertisements, Evans startles the board members by spitting on the table. Although Evans states his belief that a radio ad should irritate its listeners in order to be best remembered, Victor persuades him that the soap should emphasize cleanliness. Victor then dazzles Evans with a new slick, but toned-down radio ad. To celebrate their success with the Evans account, Kimberly and his wife take Victor and Kay out to the dinner club where Victor's old flame, Jean Ogilvie, is singing, but the night is almost ruined when Kimberly gets drunk. After separating from the Kimberlys, Victor and Kay spend a romantic evening together, culminating in Kay's acceptance of Victor's invitation to meet him at his favorite hotel, the Blue Penguin Inn. On the day of their rendezvous, Victor is surprised to discover that the hotel is under a new and less-than-attentive management. When Kay arrives, she takes one look at the accomodations and, misinterpreting Victor's intentions, immediately returns home. Victor continues to wait for Kay but leaves when he is summoned back to New York. There he is assigned by Evans to go to Hollywood to sign up radio personality Buddy Hare for his show. En route to Hollywood, Victor encounters Jean, and when they fail to rekindle their romance, Jean realizes that he is still in love with Kay. Victor later finds the remorseful Kay waiting for him in his bungalow and they kiss. After Victor and Kay become engaged, Victor works diligently to successfully complete his Hollywood assignment. To do this, Victor blackmails Hare's agent to force the performer to sign up with Evans. Upon returing to New York, Victor suffers a humiliating insult by Evans, who then praises him for his good work. Victor finds the insult so reprehensible that he calls Evans a tyrant, pours water on him and leaves his huckster life for good. Thinking that Kay will leave him now that he has quit, Victor sadly breaks the news to her, but she tells him that she will marry him regardless of his finances.
Cast & Crew
|MPAA Ratings:||Premiere Info:||not available|
|Release Date:||1947||Production Date:||
|Color/B&W:||Black and White||Distributions Co:||Loew's Inc.|
|Sound:||Mono (Western Electric Sound System)||Production Co:||Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.|
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A Harbinger of Things to Come
Dan Desjardins 2016-02-13
It is notable this film was made within two years of the end of the second world war where already we see elements of decline in post-war America. Victor...
george snedker 2012-09-19
gable backed by great cast delivers in drama about ethics in big business.one of his most unrated films.
The Hucksters (1947)
Mr. Blandings 2012-08-18
A very, very good film ... and just as timely today as it was back then. I always used to think Gable didn't do any really good work after the war but...