Dimples (film)

Dimples (1936) is a 20th Century Fox musical feature film starring Shirley Temple in a story about a mid-nineteenth century street entertainer and her wealthy patroness. The film was directed by William A. Seiter and produced by Nunnally Johnson.


Dimples (Shirley Temple) is a Bowery busker living with her pickpocket grandfather "Professor" Eustace Appleby (Frank Morgan). She is hired to entertain at a soiree in the Washington Square home of wealthy widow Caroline Drew (Helen Westley). Mrs. Drew is so charmed by Dimples she opens her home and heart to the child, providing her a life of comfort and plenty.

Mrs. Drew's nephew Allen (Robert Kent), a theatrical producer, abandons his sweetheart Betty Loring (Delma Byron) for haughty actress Cleo Marsh (Astrid Allwyn). His family is scandalized, but Allen pursues his goal of staging a brand-new play, Uncle Tom's Cabin, with Dimples portraying Little Eva.

During rehearsals, Dimples longs for her grandfather and returns to his humble dwelling, refusing to budge without the old man in tow. Mrs. Drew traces Dimples to the Bowery and a solution is found to the impasse. Allen realizes he loves Betty and is reunited with her. The film ends with Dimples appearing in New York City's first minstrel show.


Musical numbers

  • "Hey, What Did the Blue Jay Say"
  • "He Was a Dandy"
  • "Picture Me Without You"
  • "Dixie-anna"
  • "Wings of the Morning"

The songs were written by Jimmy McHugh and lyricist Ted Koehler. The dances were choreographed by Bill 'Bojangles' Robinson.


In his review in the New York Times, Frank S. Nugent wrote that the film was "not the best Temple, nor the worst." However, he thought that Temple's performance as Little Eva was "sheer bathos".

See also


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