Friday, November 9, 2012


Nineteen thirty-six was a very busy year for Jimmy Stewart.  He starred in eight full-length movies and NEXT TIME WE LOVE was his first outing as a leading man.  And he does a great job.  The film opens with him and his girlfriend (Margaret Sullavan) talking nonstop love stuff and then getting married.  It's all very sappy, but then the film takes a serious turn. A very serious turn.  James and Margaret quickly learn that love cannot overcome financial difficulties and when James takes a job as a foreign correspondent in Russia they solve the financial part, but now they have the long distance thing to deal with...and in 1936 Russia was way more long distance than it is now.

I have no idea how successful (or unsuccessful) NTWL was at the box office, but I liked it quite a bit and will definitely be watching it again.  The story is mature and maybe even a little bit ahead of it's time?  Or maybe not, I don't know, GRAND HOTEL and I AM A FUGITIVE FROM A CHAIN GANG were both made four years earlier and both even more depressing.

My biggest complaint is the movie just isn't long enough.  The story, especially towards the end, goes way too fast and it doesn't give the viewer enough time to react emotionally.  Also the ending just ends.  I wanted more or at least some closure.  Even so, NEXT TIME WE LOVE is an enjoyable watch and a nice chance to see a young Stewart before he became a household name.