Decades before Brad Pitt starred in Meet Joe Black, the story of a vacationing Grim Reaper was adapted for the screen from a popular play. Frederick March, playing Death, disguises himself as a European prince and spends three days with an amenable duke at his palatial estate. Women are instantly attracted to the Lord of the Underworld, but back off when they sense his true nature--that is, all women except for the beautiful young innocent (Evelyn Venable), who is destined to marry the duke's son.
Filmed in 1934, this is more sensual than the Pitt remake, though the acting style is more mannered than some audiences may enjoy. But at only 78 minutes, the emotional content, as well as the ending, feels more real than the lengthy '90s version. --Rochelle O'Gorman
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