“Housewife” on DVD

It’s been a pretty slim year for Ann Dvorak releases from the Warner Archive, but this week ends the drought with Housewife now available for the first time.

Housewife was one of nine films Ann appeared in for Warner Bros in 1934. While it’s not the best of the run, it probably allotted her the most screen time. After all, she is the housewife referenced in the title. George Brent is her weak-willed husband who needs Ann to serve as his backbone as he tries to move up in the world of advertising, and Bette Davis is the career girl who vies for Brent’s attention.

As far as Ann Dvorak movies go, it’s actually one of her better titles, mainly because she’s in it more-so than a lot of the other WB flicks. Plus, her clothes are quite fashionable. As far as Bette Davis movies go, it’s probably not so great. I won’t give anything away except to say I hate the ending, but if you love Ann-D as I do, go ahead and order this one. Plus, the decorative box are is Anntastic.

Now, if the Warner Archive would release The Crowd Roars, Love is a Racket, and Massacre I would be a very happy gal.



  1. Paul October 12, 2011

    i’ve only seen housewife once but i remember i liked it!

    personally i feel those Warner Archive discs are junk and waaaaay overpriced so i just wait it out on TCM and set the dvd burner when they play 😉

    i finally watched Massacre and Side Street a few weeks ago for the first time. I enjoyed them both, tho Ann doesnt have much screen time in either of them she was wonderful. i also watched Stranger in Town and enjoyed that as well. Ann was always beleivable (and beautiful!) no matter how shallow a role she was given.

    btw i saw a seller on ebay offering up a nice signed photo of her for around $1,300! i checked their other listings and saw a whole slew of preposterous prices…i think they really have no interest in selling anything!

  2. admin October 12, 2011

    I think the most I have ever paid for a signed Dvorak photo was $75 and that was for an 11×14 early 1930s print. $1,300 is indeed preposterous.

    I have been very happy with all my Warner Archive purchases. Not everything they put out is shown on TCM (or anywhere else), so I feel like I should continue to support the program and encourage more releases. As I mentioned before, I was on the verge of paying $500 to arrange a screening of “I Was an American Spy” on the Warner lot, so $20 was chicken feed at that point!

  3. Cliff Aliperti October 12, 2011

    I caught Massacre when TCM showed it too, absolutely loved it! Ann was limited, yes, but I actually wish there was a bit more Claire Dodd who I’ve really been falling for the past year or two! Got to love an evil Dudley Digges too, he’s almost the same in Massacre as he was in The Mayor of Hell!

    I’m more selective with my Warner Archives purchases than I’m proud of. They really need to have a good sale going on for me to buy … luckily they do somewhat often but still my collection is dwarfed by my own dvd-r’s burned off TCM as well.

    The $1,300 sounds crazy, but if it’s stamped Hurrell it might not be too ridiculous. Still as a longtime eBay buyer and seller I know that when it comes to Fixed Price all it takes is one sucker–I see that as a buyer, I don’t practice it as a seller, lol! With auctions an item is worth as much as any 2 (or more) people will pay; with Fixed Price it just takes one.

  4. admin October 12, 2011

    I revisited Massacre recently, and it is one of her better WB films, even though Ann-D is limited. Really interesting for it’s time.

    I have six embossed Hurrells of Ann in my collection and did not pay $1,300 for all of them combined! Plus, three of them were her own personal copies. Incidentally, the $1,300 photo listed on eBay is not even her signature, but a secretary’s. But you’re right, it only takes ones sucker to make a dealer very happy.

  5. Paul October 13, 2011

    Massacre was very enjoyable! i am big Richard Barthelmess fan so it was great seeing another “new” film of his. his body of work at WB is so unusual, i mean not really one of them can be called a “commercial” film by any means can they? yet he was a pretty big star, seems odd they would always put him in such off beat pictures. no complaint tho i love those films and he and Ann were a good match up in masscre.

    i agree with Cliff, Dudley Diggs is great! few can play a totally unscrupulous slimeball with such believability as he did! Claire Dodd is one of those unsung character actresses but she was always great, usually played the vamp or homewrecker etc etc but she did it with style 🙂

  6. […] info on new dvd of ANN DVORAK’S HOUSEWIFE […]

  7. DickP October 28, 2011

    Over time I’ve become a loyal fan of Ann Dvorak and her films; and as such, I enjoyed seeing her in this movie. But, the Director, Al Green, seemed to direct everyone to be a “Bette Davis” act-alike (short clipped sentences, etc). You can see that even the normally somewhat casual George Brent is being rushed in most of his scenes. Green directed Bette Davis to her Academy Award a year later wherein her acting was in the same “Bette Davis” mode. The script for this movie is right out of an early ‘30s soap opera, complete with rags to riches background. And, I would add, with the expected happy ending, as usual for films of the time.

    All that said, when you watch the movie the second time watch Ann Dvorak carefully and you’ll see her trying to maintain her normal great poise. This is a movie well worth watching and I would recommend it to anyone that’s interested in the early to mid 30’s dramas. While I wouldn’t put this movie at the top of my Ann Dvorak favorite films list, I did enjoy watching it very much.

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