6.7/10
264
5 user 3 critic

That Certain Age (1938)

A teenage girl clashes with her newspaper publisher father's star reporter while he stays in their country guest house, but soon finds herself falling in love with him.

Director:

Edward Ludwig

Writers:

Bruce Manning (screenplay), F. Hugh Herbert (original story)
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Deanna Durbin ... Alice Fullerton
Melvyn Douglas ... Vincent Bullitt
Jackie Cooper ... Kenneth 'Ken' Warren
Irene Rich ... Dorothy Fullerton
Nancy Carroll ... Grace Bristow
John Halliday ... Gilbert Fullerton
Jackie Searl ... Tony (as Jack Searl)
Juanita Quigley ... The Pest
Charles Coleman ... Stevens
Peggy Stewart ... Mary Lee
Grant Mitchell ... Jeweler
Claire Du Brey ... Horsewoman
Helen Grayco Helen Grayco ... Girl
Buddy Pepper Buddy Pepper ... Friend
Vondell Darr Vondell Darr ... Friend
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Storyline

Dashing reporter Vincent Bullit has just returned from covering the Spanish Civil War. His boss, newspaper magnate Fullerton, has more plans to send him off to China. However, first Fullerton invites Bullit to the peace and quiet of his own home to write a series of European affair articles. When Fullerton's adolescent daughter Alice develops a crush on Bullit, her suitor, boyscout Ken Warren, doesn't seem to stand a chance. Mr. and Mrs. Fullerton, Ken Warren, and even Vincent Bullit himself do their best to sway young Alice's feelings away from the older man. It's a difficult task though, as she is at 'that certain age.' Written by Gary Jackson <garyjack5@cogeco.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

puberty | puppy love | See All (2) »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 October 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

That Certain Age See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

That Certain Age was 12th in the list of top US box office grossing movies of 1938 See more »

Goofs

After leaving the guesthouse, Alice says to Ken, "I'd better get ready." In the next shot her hair ribbon suddenly disappears. See more »

Connections

References Dracula (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

Aria from 'Romeo et Juliette'
(uncredited)
Music by Charles Gounod
Performed by Deanna Durbin
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Strong work from Deanna Durbin and Jackie Cooper
25 November 2012 | by csteidlerSee all my reviews

Deanna Durbin is excellent as bright and talented rich girl Alice Fullerton. She and her pal Ken (Jackie Cooper) put on musical plays in the guest house of her parents' estate. Alice's newspaper mogul father invites journalist Vincent Bullitt (Melvyn Douglas) to stay and work in said guest house—and Alice is quickly distracted from her friends by the romantic and dashing Mr. Bullitt.

Jackie Cooper gives a superior performance as the best friend who loves Alice and has to watch her chase after the older, successful and glamorous man of the world. Melvyn Douglas is good as Vincent Bullitt but his character is slightly bland, at least for someone who's supposed to be such an adventurer.

The plot is okay if not especially surprising; it's a sympathetic look at young love that tries to represent the viewpoints of both the kids involved and the parents and other grownups around them. It doesn't entirely work—this is one of those pictures where all the adults are so darn wise and well-meaning it's just kind of irritating. The kids—Durbin, Cooper, even little Juanita Quigley as the pesty little sister—come across as much more genuine.

Deanna sings a few songs—a couple of operatic numbers that are fine as well as a handful of new songs that are pleasant but no classics. Durbin's acting performance, however, is superb—she is totally convincing, as is Jackie Cooper, himself an old pro at age 16. Durbin and Cooper certainly leave the grown up actors in the dust.

Definitely worthwhile for fans of these young stars.

Research question: Did everybody really know Morse code in the 1930s, or was it just kids in the movies?


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