Bright Eyes (1934) - Rotten Tomatoes

Bright Eyes1934

Bright Eyes (1934)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Bright Eyes Photos

Movie Info

Despite stiff competition like Poor Little Rich Girl and Heidi, Bright Eyes is arguably the best of Shirley Temple's 1930s vehicles. The little curly-top is cast as Shirley Blake, daughter of Mary Blake (Lois Wilson), the widowed housemaid of snooty J. Wellington and Anita Smythe (Theodore Von Eltz and Dorothy Christy). Though continually terrorized by the Smythe's obnoxious, doll-destroying daughter Joy (Jane Withers), Shirley finds comfort in the fact that she is the darling of the airplane-pilot buddies of her late father. Especially fond of our heroine is flyboy Loop Merritt, who arranges a birthday party for the girl. Alas, even as Shirley sings "On the Good Ship Lollipop" to a gathering of beaming airmen, her mother Mary is run over by a car while shopping for her daughter's birthday cake. It thus becomes Loop's painful duty to tell Shirley that her mother "cracked up," just like her father did (if this scene doesn't move the viewer to tears, the viewer is made of granite). Fortunately, the Smythe's irascible Uncle Ned takes a liking to Shirley, securing her financial future at the expense of his repulsive relatives. But before this happy ending can come about, Shirley must be rescued from an imperiled passenger plane by the resourceful Loop. Though Shirley Temple is inarguably the main drawing card in Bright Eyes, 9-year-old Jane Withers is equally terrific as the pint-sized "villainess"; indeed, some critics felt that Withers stole the show, and it was this as much as anything else that earned Withers her own starring series at 20th Century-Fox.

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Shirley Temple
as Shirley Blake
James Dunn
as Loop Merritt
Judith Allen
as Adele Martin
Jane Darwell
as Mrs. Higgins
Lois Wilson
as Mary Blake
Charles Sellon
as Uncle Ned Smith
Jane Withers
as Joy Smythe
Theodore von Eltz
as J. Wellington Smythe
Dorothy Christy
as Anita Smythe
George Irving
as Judge Thompson
Earle Foxe
as Bond Man
Paul McVey
as Attorney
Frank Moran
as Truck Driver
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News & Interviews for Bright Eyes

Critic Reviews for Bright Eyes

All Critics (12) | Top Critics (1)

Shirley really shines.

June 23, 2004 | Rating: 3/5
Top Critic

Shirley Temple is seen more than in previous pictures, which is a good thing, as people come to see her. James Dunn, the aviator, seems to be the best cinema papa or god-papa she has acquired.

April 20, 2020 | Full Review…

One shudders to think what Bright Eyes would be like if it didn't have Shirley Temple to take the curse off.

September 25, 2019 | Full Review…

The first movie Shirley Temple got top billing.

July 12, 2015 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

This "Good Ship Lollipop" is sweet, but sad, too.

December 18, 2010 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

One of Shirley Temple's best musicals, laced with sentiment and song.

January 10, 2009 | Rating: 5/5

Audience Reviews for Bright Eyes

I realize the storylines for most of Shirley Temple's movies are pretty much the same, this one no exception. But some are better than others, and this one is very cute, touching, and funny!

Sarah Prisbylla
Sarah Prisbylla

Super Reviewer

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