Men Are Such Fools


1h 4m 1932

Film Details

Also Known As
Freedom, Second Fiddle
Release Date
Nov 18, 1932
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Jefferson Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 4m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8 reels

Synopsis

Italian-born Antonio "Tony" Mello plays second violin in a Viennese café and is in love with aspiring singer Lilli Arno. Lilli pressures Tony to introduce her to the café's owner, Klepak, and after promising to sing in a seductive manner, she is given a chance to perform and soon becomes the café's star entertainer. As she grows more successful, however, she begins to lose interest in Tony and resents his covetous manner. When two American tourists flirt provocatively with her in the café, Tony flies into a rage and knocks out one of the offending men. Lilli is fired over the incident and is about to break with Tony when he announces his intention to go to America and try his hand at composing. Her own ambitions aroused, Lilli agrees to marry Tony, and they emigrate to San Francisco. In San Francisco, Tony's old friend, Werner, gets Tony a job playing second violin in his club's orchestra and introduces the couple to Molly, a hat check girl, Tom Hyland, a detective, and Joe Darrow, the owner of a rival nightclub. Darrow, a notorious playboy whose previous romantic involvement resulted in his jilted lover's suicide, becomes infatuated with Lilli and, over Tony's objections, induces her to sing in his club. Lilli soon gives in to Darrow's advances, and an affair quickly progresses. Then one night, Tony, having grown suspicious of Lilli's new jewelry collection, makes an unexpected visit to the club and finds Lilli in Darrow's arms. Enraged with jealousy, Tony assaults Darrow and, because he refuses Hyland's request to implicate Lilli and Darrow in an affair, is sent to San Quentin Prison. While in prison, Tony composes several marches and teaches his fellow inmates to play classical music. Although ridiculed by his mates for his enduring faith in Lilli, Tony dreams of their reunion and savors letters he believes are from Lilli but are actually written by a sympathetic Molly. Later, Tony is scheduled to conduct the prison orchestra before an audience of distinguished musicians, but receives his parole just before the performance. As soon as he is released, Tony rushes to find Lilli, but discovers that she committed suicide after being cast off by Darrow. Overwhelmed by anger, Tony tracks down Darrow and kills him. Back in prison on a life sentence, Tony falls into a lifeless depression, and the initial efforts of his cellmate Stiles, Molly, Hyland, the warden and Werner to restore his vigor fail. When the prison band begins to perform one of his marches and deliberately plays it badly, however, Tony leaps to the podium and begins to lead the band with joyful abandon. Finally in his element, Tony faces his future, which may include parole and a romance with Molly, with hope.

Film Details

Also Known As
Freedom, Second Fiddle
Release Date
Nov 18, 1932
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Jefferson Pictures Corp.
Distribution Company
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 4m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8 reels

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The working titles of this film were Freedom and Second Fiddle. Producer Joseph Schnitzer was a former president of RKO Radio Pictures. Men Are Such Fools was the first production of his independent film company, Jefferson Pictures Corp. Second assistant director Samuel Schnitzer was Joseph's son. A Film Daily news item adds Dorothy Vernon and Lyle Tayo to the cast, but their participation in the final film has not been confirmed.