Broken Dreams (October 20, 1933)
Released on October 20, 1933: Randolph Scott is Dr. Morley, a man who abandoned his newborn son, but six hears later fights for custody from Mom and Pop Miller, who have raised him as their own.
Directed by Robert G. Vignola
Written by Maude Fulton and Olga Printzlau.
The Actors: Randolph Scott (Doctor Robert Morley), Martha Sleeper (Martha Morley), Beryl Mercer (Aunt Hilda Miller), Joseph Cawthorn (Uncle John Miller), Buster Phelps (Billy Morley), Charlotte Merriam (Grace), Sidney Bracey (Hopkins), Adele St. Mauer (Mademoiselle), Phyllis Lee (nurse), Martin Burton (Paul), Clarence Geldart (Doctor Flemming), Edward LeSaint (Judge Harvey E. Blake), Finis Barton (Gladys), Sam Flint (Doctor Greenwood), George Nash (unknown), Bradley Page (unknown).
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Hopkins, I think we're finished . . .
Pull out the Kleenex and get ready for a drama that will move you no matter who's side you are on. Husbands, wives and children . . . and the tug of love between them. Sometimes life can be so very complicated and difficult. Young doctor Morley, played by Randolph Scott, is pacing nervously in the hospital waiting room as his wife is giving birth to their new son. Unfortunately it is 1933 and far too often giving birth even in a hospital is a dangerous thing, and his wife does not survive childbirth. Devastated, Dr. Morley refuses to even look at his new baby son, and allows Uncle John and Aunt Hilda Miller to take the baby and raise it at their own. After years of study in Vienna the doctor returns to the U.S. and begins a medical practice that focuses on children, without a thought about his own son. Just as he is about to get married again to a society girl, Aunt Hilda brings little Billy to his office to introduce him to his father. In the instant that Randolph Scott sees his son we realize that he has love for the young boy. He immediately begins to have a relationship with the boy, although the boy is never told that Dr. Morley is his real father. Now comes the crisis . . . Randolph Scott's wife lets him know that she does not want to experience childbirth, but Randolph Scott desperately wants children. His wife gets the bright idea that they can take his son from Aunt and Uncle Miller and raise him as their own, making everyone happy. Well, everyone except Mom and Pop Miller . . . and young Billy. Randolph Scott goes to court to gain custody of young Billy, and although the judge thinks that Mom and Pop Miller are probably the better custodians of the boy, the judge must give Billy to his real father. The tug of affection between Randolph Scott, his wife and his son threatens to break up the marriage. One evening after a tumultuous dinner episode when the wife says to the butler, "Hopkins, I think we're finished," there seems to be much more meaning to those words than just the end of dinner. There is more drama and crisis than I care to go into, but just keep the tissues handy and hold on to your popcorn, because it's going to be a very bumpy ride. Depending on your view of child custody, this drama may not turn out the way you want . . . but you sure don't want to miss this weeper for all the white kernel popcorn in Niles, Ohio.
Mary Brian, Isabel Jewell and Patsy Kelly
Dinner at the Morley's with little Billy
Beryl Mercer cries as she thinks about losing little Billy, played by Buster Phelps
Beryl Mercer, Randolph Scott and Joseph Cawthorn pace the hospital floor as little Billy is about to be born
Beryl Mercer tries to get Randolph Scott to accept his new son
Beryl Mercer as Aunt Hilda Miller
Beryl Mercer and Buster Phelps get ready to separate when the judge orders the boy to live with his father
Buster Phelps and Phyllis Lee
Buster Phelps an Sidney Bracey
Buster Phelps as little Billy Morley on his sixth birthday
Edward LeSaint as Judge Blake
Joseph Cawthorn, Buster Phelps and Beryl Mercer in the judge's office
Joseph Cawthorn and Meryl Mercer mourn after losing custody of little Billy
Joseph Cawthorn as Uncle John 'Pop' Miller in Broken Dreams
Martha Sleeper and Randolph Scott in Broken Dreams
Martha Sleeper as Martha Morley in Broken Dreams
Martha Sleeper polishes her nails as she talks about not having any kids
Martin Burton tells Martha Sleeper that he wants her to leave her husband for him
Randolph Scott and Buster Phelps in Broken Dreams
Randolph Scott learns from Clarence Geldart that his wife died in childbirth
Randolph Scot and Martha Sleeper
Randolph Scott adn Martha Sleeper in Broken Dreams
Randolph Scott in Broken Dreams
Sidney Brace and Buster Phelps
Sidney Brace as Hopkins the butler in Broken Dreams