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Born to Be Bad

Born to Be Bad (1934)

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Release Date: Jan 1, 1934 Wide

audience

28

liked it
Average Rating: 2.9/5
User Ratings: 922

My Rating

Movie Info

Loretta Young, who became known almost exclusively for playing sweet, wholesome roles, is kind of a shocker in this romantic drama as Letty Strong, an unwed mother who survives by living life as a grifter and the next thing to a prostitute -- all for the good of her son Mickey (Jackie Kelk), who, not yet 10 years old, is turning into a street hustler every bit as devious and untrustworthy as she is. Then, one day, he's skating on the street and gets hit by a milk truck, which happens to be

Unrated,

Drama, Classics

Ralph Graves

Jan 6, 2004

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All Critics (1) | Fresh (0) | Rotten (1) | DVD (1)

Even by standards of Depression melodramas, this banal woman's picture, about a single mom forced to give up her son to guardian parents, further suffers from a weak perfromance by Cary Grant and unconvincing one from Loretta Young.

February 11, 2006 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

Audience Reviews for Born to Be Bad

An early attempt on Grant's part, most of the film is less of an actual film and more of a cautionary tale for the nymphets and flappers still left over from the roaring twenties. At least the film is carried on the backs of two of the best stars of the day. Old Hollywood legends Cary Grant and Loretta Young are the main reason to watch this venture, not for any superb performances, because neither shines in this dour picture. Grant is still wet behind the ears, having followed Mae West around like a lovesick puppy in his last two films, and was completely wrong for the part of the golden boy philanthropist with a bendable will. Loretta, as the loving mother with a bad girl streak, is perfectly in her element but falls flat with extremely lax dialogue and ridiculous supporting characters. The financial aspect of the film, which is part of the plot, makes no sense, and the fact that she's a mother makes even less sense. The film feels cut up and censored, and most of the more mature themes are so watered down and ill used that it's little more than a morality tale. It's short, and mind numbingly self-indulgent, soapy and melodramatic, and there's little to this film except some early examples of Grant and Young's acting. Easy to miss, I assure you.
July 16, 2012
FrizzDrop

Super Reviewer

Bad acting (yes, even The Mr. Cary Grant - it was before he found his style). Bad filming. Cliched and ill-paced story.
March 9, 2012
MeetMeinMontauk
Jennifer D

Super Reviewer

How can you judge a woman as fit to be a mother or not? This movie doesn't discuss this question even though it really should. Personally I didn't think Young was a horrible mother in this movie, she treated her son well. I didn't like the ending either.
September 14, 2010
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Born to be Bad (1934) (DE)
  • Born to be Bad (1934) (UK)
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