Starring Francis Lederer, Joan Bennett, Charles Ruggles, Mary Boland, Walter Kingsford
Directed by Alexander Hall
Runtime: 85 min.
Print Quality: B
Pursuit of Happiness was adapted from the risque stage comedy by Lawrence Langner and Armina Marshall. Set during the American revolution, the film centers around the quaint 18th century custom of "bundling"--that is, having unmarried men and women share the same bed during cold weather, albeit fully clothed and with a wooden plank separating the bedmates. Joan Bennett is the American heroine, an innkeeper's daughter, and Francis Lederer the Hessian hero, who has deserted the English cause to experience American freedom--most notably the bundling practice. As Bennett's parents, Charlie Ruggles and Mary Boland perform their usual domestic comedy in period costume. TV Guide listings frequently confuse the 1934 Pursuit of Happiness with an altogether different 1971 TV-movie of the same name.