Poor Little Rich Girl

Watch Poor Little Rich Girl

  • G
  • 1936
  • 1 hr 20 min
  • 7.0  (1,568)

Poor Little Rich Girl is a 1936 musical comedy-drama film directed by Irving Cummings and starring the legendary child star Shirley Temple, along with Alice Faye and Gloria Stuart. The film tells the story of Barbara Barry (Shirley Temple), a young girl who is the wealthiest in the world but is deprived of affection and love as her mother is constantly absorbed in high society and her father constantly absent up in the sky as an aviator. Despite her wealth, Barbara finds herself lonely and desperate for a friend that she can truly trust and confide in. Her wishes come true when she meets Tomboy (Alice Faye), a friendly cabaret singer who befriends her and helps in her time of need.

The film opens with young Barbara (Temple) receiving a doll from her father before he flies off to China for an extended period. Her mother (Gloria Stuart) throws a party to celebrate the departure of her husband, oblivious to the emotional needs of her daughter. This is a recurring pattern in the lives of the Barry family. After being neglected by her parents, Barbara is left in the care of her nanny, Marie (Jane Darwell), who does her best to provide the attention that she needs, but it is not enough. Barbara invents an imaginary friend, "The Lonely One," with whom she shares her feelings.

One day, while her nanny is ill, Barbara wanders away from her mansion and ends up in a rundown area, where she stumbles upon a cabaret run by Tony (Michael Whalen) and his sister, Jerry (Alice Faye). She is drawn to Jerry, who takes an immediate liking to her and offers to give her a tour of the cabaret. Barbara is fascinated by the dance numbers and music, and is in awe of Jerry's performance. Jerry nicknames Barbara "Alone", which amuses the young girl. They become friends, and Jerry invites Barbara to come to the cabaret again.

When Barbara's mother discovers where she has been, she forbids her from seeing Jerry, thinking her an unsavory character. Barbara rebels and ends up back in the cabaret, where she falls asleep after staying up late to watch Jerry's performance. She is found by Tomboy, another cabaret singer, who helps her get back home, where her mother is waiting. From then on, Jerry is forbidden to see Barbara, and the young girl sinks deeper into her depression.

Later, Barbara's mother throws a party and invites Tony to perform, hoping that it will distract her daughter from Jerry. However, Barbara runs away during the performance and ends up at Jerry's apartment. There, she finds Tony, who tells her how much Jerry misses her. After a heart-to-heart talk with Jerry, Barbara comes to terms with her problems and returns home, where she is reunited with her mother and father. The film ends with the message of the importance of love and understanding in every family.

In Poor Little Rich Girl, Temple showcases her talent as an actress, dancer, and singer. Her natural charm and expressiveness shine through her portrayal of Barbara. Faye's performance as Tomboy is equal parts tough and tender, making her character both intriguing and loveable. Gloria Stuart's cold and calculative portrayal of Barbara's mother contrasts with the warmth and sincerity of Darwell's nanny. The music is composed by legendary songwriters Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart, the songs include various catchy and unforgettable tunes like "When I'm with You" and "Military Man".

Poor Little Rich Girl has all the elements of classic Golden Age Hollywood films - melodrama, music, and heartwarming ending. It is a clear representation of Shirley Temple's iconic and memorable performances as Hollywood's most famous child star of the time. The film is a family-friendly movie that audiences of all ages can enjoy, with its message that love, friendship and acceptance can help one overcome any difficulties.

Poor Little Rich Girl is a 1936 adventure movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 20 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.0.

Poor Little Rich Girl
Where to Watch Poor Little Rich Girl
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 20 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.0  (1,568)