I have recently watched a few wonderful early Robert Montgomery movies, and I am amazed at the lack of Bob love! Both of them stared Norma Shearer and both times Shearer's character ended up with a pumpkin of a man instead of her ardent admirer, Montgomery.
The first was Riptide.
I adored this movie just because Montgomery is so darn funny in it. He is trying to win over the wife of another man, and he is so charming and suave... he almost does it. Shearer however is devoted to her husband. (Oh fidelity... it's messed up many a beautiful old movie pairing) The scene where Bob is wearing a towel on his head and a waiter is putting ice in it... oh its brilliant.
The second was Strangers May Kiss
Okay... I know that this opinion is shared by film viewers everywhere, but there is no denying it... Norma Shearer is one of the most amazing actresses of all time! I love it when the man in her life has just walked out on her. There is this moment where you can watch every emotion pass over her face (especially her eyes) devastation, anger, sadness and then the distant, shell shocked look takes over her feature... and Norma gives into the idea that she will no longer belong to one man, but become available to men everywhere. It's hypnotic.
But back on topic... Again, Montgomery is sweet, forgiving, solid and Norma goes for the man who broke her heart.
I'm not quite sure why MGM didn't cast Montgomery as the leading man more opposite Norma. Or why they didn't cast him in different type roles. Strangers May Kiss is a wonderful pre-code though. It has some great quips and naughtiness associated with Shearer Pre-codes!
No worries however Bob will always be the leading man in my heart!