"Robert Williams doesn't even get any billing on the DVD cover or on other promotions of this film, but he IS the star of the film....and he is outstanding.
Williams could have been a major star, a very well-known actor, had he not died four days after this picture was released with a ruptured appendix. The man simply puts on an acting clinic here. I wonder if young aspiring actors are ever shown this film and told to study Williams? If is wasn't for this film, I assume nobody would ever know about this guy.
Anyway, the movie is really dated but its interesting thanks to some great dialog, mainly, once again, by Williams. Jean Harlow gets the billing but a young Loretta Young has the real beauty and charm here. Too bad her role was so minor and bland. She looked absolutely gorgeous.
The storyline is one of Hollywood's favorite themes: the average Joe beating up on the snobby rich people. Harlow's "mother" in here (Louise Closser Hale) plays that snob role perfectly.
Even though I gave it only three stars, there are lots of laughs in this film and it was a lot better than I thought it would be. Watching Williams' acting performance is worth the price of the disc, and then some. "
S. A. Alukonis | New Hampshire | 08/17/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Any B&W fan will appreciate this film. I LOVED Robert Williams--I thought he was refreshingly original and had great chemistry with both of his female co-stars, two stunningly beautiful and very different women. The scene with the the song about the garters is priceless, and one of the sexiest scenes ever filmed(and there are many other breathtakingly sexy scenes as well). Although it should have been called "Cinderella Man", in captures it's time period in every way. I would have loved to see Robert Williams in other roles after this one, but he died very shortly after filming. You'll also love the scene where Stew follows Ann into the library! Don't miss this cool and sexy film."
Now Nostalgic, But Still Surprisingly Fresh (3.5 stars)
Antonio Robert | Slovakia, Europe | 02/22/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Just 18-year-old Loretta Young comes off as a very talented young actress in this, now three-quarters-of-century old comedy. Her character, of which a viewer will never know her first name, is vulnerable and pretty, especially in her evening gown. No wonder that the journalist colleague (played by Robert Williams) has hard time after snubbing her for a rich platinum blonde. The great bit of nostalgia stems from the fact that Williams died later that year the movie was completed and Jean Harlow (the platinum blonde) died a few years later. Otherwise, it is a surprisingly fresh and lovable comedy (although you shouldn't expect too much), with somehow familiar music and a merit to the name of Frank Capra, who went on to become one of the greatest director Hollywood has ever produced."
Give it a Few Tries
Samantha Kelley | USA | 12/14/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Platinum Blonde is the story of a newspaper reporter (Robert Williams), one of the best. His job is to investigate a scandal with one of the best known families, the Schuylers. He's so clever, he gets them to admit to a story against their will, but in the process is captured by the eye of beautiful daugher Anne (Jean Harlow). Although he scoops them, he also helps them out of the mess and makes his way into the family by eloping with Anne. This hurts his pal Gallagher (Loretta Young) who has loved him for years, but he's in his own world. He doesn't quite realize what he's getting himself into as a poor man wedding a rich family. Cracks from his friends ensue and day by day his wife does all that she can to change him.
Unfortunately, people have high expectations for this film, and it doesn't necessarily measure up. First of all, this is not typical Capra. There are not heartfelt messages of hope at the end. The characters do not signify what the average man strives to be or the pitfalls he faces. Secondly, Harlow does not play a seductress here; in fact, she's quite classy. Last, Williams is an unknown, and alongside an all star cast, he's the leading man. This can be startling because we have never seen him before and are therefore less likely to like him right off. The first time I saw this film, I was incredibly disappointed and what upset me even more was that this was Harlow's first DVD release. Although the title became her nickname, this is an awful way to experience typical Harlow, but it is a wonderful way for fans to see her in a new light.
If you can find a way to judge this film not based on expectations but on its own merits, you'll find it to be quite enjoyable. Each player is fantastic, namely Williams whose naturalness and easy humor makes the film breezy and fun to watch. Harlow is regal and intelligent, not the least bit green despite this being one of her first big films (before the eyebrow makeover). Young is fresh and exciting, quite thin, but absolutely gorgeous."
ODE TO ROBERT WILLIAMS
scotsladdie | 11/19/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"PLATINUM BLONDE, an early Capra comedy, through heavy-handed, showed glints of the director's knack for outrageous situations and cast Harlow in the improbable role of a hoi-polloi socialite. This film plowed newer ground, even while it reinforced (with Loretta Young's performance) the career-girl myth. Rather than simply break a man's heart and betray him with another, Harlow's emasculation of her ace-reporter husband challenged not his sexuality, but his role as an independent provider. Socialite Harlow views his livlihood and his playwrighting aspirations both as an inconvenience and a blight on leisure-class dilettantism. Indefatigable and insensitive shrew that she is, she strips him of all that has been essential to he self-definition; insisting on setting up house in her parent's mansion, she insults his friends and belittles his work. The forgotten Robert Williams is easily the best thing about this film; his performance still shines with a natural virility uncommon in early talkies. Tragically, he died soon after this film was made."