Cast & Crew
[The following plot summary is based on the English-language version of this film, The Passionate Plumber ; character names refer to that version.] Elmer E. Tuttle, a Parisian plumber, is summoned by socialite Patricia Jardine's chauffeur, Julius J. McCracken, to fix her shower. Patricia is in love with Tony Lagorce, whom she met in Monte Carlo, but is trying to avoid him because Tony has told her he is married to Nina Estrados, who will not give him a divorce. Tony is not really married, however, and tells Nina that he can't marry her because he is married to Patricia and she will not give him a divorce. When Tony, who has just arrived in Paris, breaks into Patricia's room, he sees Elmer come out of the shower and assumes that he is her lover. He then challenges Elmer to a duel, which neither wins. At a fancy dress party, Elmer, helped by Julius, tries to show famous French general Bouschay the new pistol he has invented, but when he does, the general thinks that Elmer is an assasin and runs away. Because Elmer has fallen in love with Patricia, he is desperate to sell his invention so he can court her, and crashes the party once more. When Tony sees Elmer, he again thinks that Elmer is Patricia's lover, and she encourages his misconception when she takes Elmer to the baccarat table. There Elmer again encounters the general, who is as frightened of the gun as he was the first time, and pandemonium erupts. Later that night, Julius drags Elmer back to Patricia's house and she asks him to act as her lover to keep her away from Tony. Because she fears that her resolve may weaken, she tells Elmer to use force, if necessary, to keep her and Tony apart. When Tony arrives and asks Patricia to go away with him, she succombs to his charms, but then Elmer enters the bedroom and starts to kiss her, inciting a jealous Tony to leave. Elmer stays outside Patricia's bedroom door until morning, angering Patricia, who asks her maid Albine to think of a way to get rid of him. but nothing works. During one of her attempts to oust Elmer from the house, Patricia's Aunt Charlotte comes for a visit and suspects that Patricia is entertaining a man in her room. To save Patricia's reputation, Elmer then pretends that he is a doctor. When he briefly leaves the room, Patricia sneaks away in her aunt's clothes and goes to Tony, after which Elmer calls him and tells him to come to Patricia's house. Soon a furious Nina arrives at Patricia's house, followed by Patricia, who has just returned from Tony's . When the two women start to exchange information, they suddenly realize that Tony has been deceiving them both. When Tony arrives, they hide and listen as Tony explains his technique with women to Elmer. Infuriated, the women then appear and start throwing most of Patricia's furnishings at the incredulous Tony. After the mêlée, Tony leaves, followed by Nina, who decides that he really is the man for her. Then Patricia goes to Elmer, suddenly realizing that she loves him, and Julius goes to Albine, who is his perfect woman.
Jean Del Val
This was a French-language version of the 1932 film The Passionate Plumber, which was directed by Edward Sedgwick and starred Buster Keaton and Jimmy Durante. The play Her Cardboard Lover was adapted from the French play Dans sa candeur naïve by Jacques Deval (Paris, 13 January 1926). The Broadway version of the play starred Jeanne Eagels and Leslie Howard. According to a modern source, this French version had only a few, unimportant changes from the English-language original. M-G-M made another film adaptation of the play in 1942 under the title Her Cardboard Lover. That film was directed by George Cukor and starred Norma Shearer and Robert Taylor.