Desire (1936) - Rotten Tomatoes


Desire (1936)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Desire Photos

Movie Info

A beautiful, sophisticated woman uses her considerable charms to con a jeweler out of a pearl necklace worth a fortune. She, a notorious jewel thief, then heads for Paris, leaving a stodgy psychiatrist framed for her crime. She is careening toward the border in her car and passes a car driven by a vacationing American engineer, nearly forcing him off the road. Once at the border, the woman almost panics when she sees that the guards are checking luggage and purses. Quickly she slips the pearls into the waiting American's pocket. As soon as he makes it over the border, she is hot on his heels. Though she flirts with him from her vehicle, he is shy and ignores her. In desperation, she speeds ahead, stops and breaks her engine. Naturally he picks her up and together they go to San Sebastian, where her partner waits. Along the way, the American falls head-over-heels for the girl until he finds the purloined pearls in his pocket. He doesn't know that she has fallen deeply in love with him. Though she desperately wants to be with him, another member of her jewel-thieving ring tells her that her past will prevent all chances at romantic happiness. She lies to him and tells him that she has a husband and then admits her true vocation in hopes of scaring him away. Fortunately, he is not so easily frightened and by the story's stylish ending, the lovers are joyously reunited.


Marlene Dietrich
as Madeleine de Beaupre
Gary Cooper
as Tom Bradley
John Halliday
as Carlos Margoli
William Frawley
as Mr. Gibson
Ernest Cossart
as Aristide Duval
Akim Tamiroff
as Police Official
Alan Mowbray
as Dr. Edouard Pauquet
Zeffie Tilbury
as Aunt Olga
Stanley Andrews
as Customs inspector
Harry Antrim
as Chauffeur
Armand Kaliz
as Jewelry Clerk
Gaston Glass
as Jewelry Clerk
Albert Pollet
as French Policeman
Alden Chase
as Hotel Clerk
George Davis
as Garage Man
Constant Franke
as Border Official
Robert Emmett O'Connor
as Customs Official
Rafael Blanco
as Haywagon Driver
Tony Merlo
as Waiter
George MacQuarrie
as Clerk With Gun
Robert E. O'Connor
as Customs Official
Rollo Lloyd
as Clerk in Mayor's Office
Alfonso Pedroza
as Oxcart Driver
View All

Critic Reviews for Desire

All Critics (8) | Top Critics (1)

Desire is a most unusual and extremely fertile example of artistic cross-pollination between two very different auteurs: Frank Borzage and Ernst Lubitsch.

July 28, 2006 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Marlene Dietrich and Gary Cooper proved a winning team in Joseph von Sternberg's 1930 Morocco, and sparks reignite in Desire.

September 21, 2021 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Cooper is charming, hilarious, sweet - and that smile is so swoon-worthy. It's one of his best performances. Dietrich is enchanting. She gets to play at mysterious, sultry, seductive and, yes, she sings!

August 20, 2021 | Rating: A | Full Review…

Not particularly known for comedies, director Frank Borzage made a sparking gem of one with 'Desire.'

August 12, 2021 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Cooper catches the light note perfectly, and Marlene is brighter than in many recent efforts.

April 16, 2020 | Full Review…

The superb Spanish scenery is handsomely photographed and so is the superb Miss Dietrich.

October 2, 2019 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews

There are no featured reviews for Desire at this time.

Desire Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

News & Features