The Smiling Lieutenant

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.



Total Count: 8


Audience Score

User Ratings: 448
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Movie Info

When the romantically unappealing princess of his homeland takes a shine to him, a loyal Viennese officer obediently marries her, finding her quite lovable once his own charming mistress instructs her in the arts of femininity. This rarely shown but delightful Lubitschian film features the always-courtly Maurice Chevalier.


Maurice Chevalier
as Lieutenant Niki
Miriam Hopkins
as Princess Anna
George Barbier
as King Adolf XV
Elizabeth Patterson
as Baroness von Schwedel
Robert Strange
as Adjutant von Rockoff
Harry Bradley
as Count Von Halden
Karl Stall
as Master of ceremonies
Granville Bates
as Bill collector
Harry C. Bradley
as Count von Halden
Charles Wagenheim
as Arresting Officer
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Critic Reviews for The Smiling Lieutenant

All Critics (8) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (7) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for The Smiling Lieutenant

  • Mar 31, 2016
    I'll be honest, Claudette Colbert is very cute and she made this movie for me. The plot has a somewhat dippy Maurice Chevalier marrying a Princess (Miriam Hopkins) to avoid an international incident, thus breaking his lover's (Colbert's) heart. When she arranges to meet up with him anyway, she's caught by Hopkins, and after a mutual, (hilariously overwrought) cry, she tells Hopkins (in song) that in order to keep Chevalier, "Jazz Up Your Lingerie". The movie is pre-Code which made scenes like that possible, as well as allude to unmarried sex between Colbert and Chevalier, and Hopkins's desire to consummate her marriage. This naughtiness is also part of the movie's charm. It's interesting that the movie wrong-foots us by having the 'wrong girl' get the man. A big hit in 1931 and nominated by the Academy for Best Picture, it's still very watchable 85 years later.
    Antonius B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 26, 2014
    I absolutely love Chevalier pictures. They are tremendously silly but they have a riske element to them that is delightful. Colbert and Chevalier have fantastic chemistry.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Sep 25, 2012
    I really enjoyed this movie, it was hilarious. Sure, it's got a pretty normal romance going on, but it is one of those comedies with a lot of mistakes that turn out very funny. The cast is great too, I loved Chevalier and Colbert and Hopkins together as the love triangle. If you like them or just enjoy romantic comedies, I recommend this.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Feb 21, 2012
    i'm not a huge fan of operetta or chevalier but they both won me over here and we can thank herr lubitsch for that. i do have some issues with the film, namely the extreme madonna-whore complex and the ending but the rest is such a delight it's hard to get too upset over. miriam hopkins and claudette colbert are adorable, despite reports they were at each other's throats during filming
    Stella D Super Reviewer

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