Maisie (film)

Directed by Edwin L. Marin
Produced by J. Walter Ruben
Written by Wilson Collison (novel)
Mary C. McCall, Jr.
Starring Robert Young
Ann Sothern
Music by Edward Ward
Cinematography Leonard Smith
Editing by Fredrick Y. Smith
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date(s) June 22, 1939 (1939-06-22)
Running time 75 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Maisie is a 1939 comedy film starring Robert Young and Ann Sothern, based on the novel Dark Dame by Wilson Collison. It was the first of ten films starring Ann Sothern as Maisie Ravier. In Mary C. McCall, Jr.'s screenplay, Maisie is stranded penniless in a small Wyoming town, takes a job as a ranch maid, and gets caught in a web of romantic entanglements.


When showgirl Maisie Ravier (Ann Sothern) arrives at a small Wyoming town, she finds her new employer has folded after a single performance, leaving her stranded with only 15 cents. She persuades Rico (George Tobias) to hire her for his midway shooting gallery.

Her first customer is an unfriendly "Slim" Martin (Robert Young), the manager of a ranch. Slim accidentally drops his wallet full of money. Rico picks it up and leaves town. Slim has Maisie arrested for theft, but when a search finds only 15 cents, admits his mistake. The deputy sheriff informs Maisie that vagrants have to be out of town by midnight, so she hides in the back of Slim's truck. When Slim returns to the ranch, he is none too pleased to discover the stowaway.

He has Maisie driven to the railway station the next morning. When the ranch owners, Cliff (Ian Hunter) and Sybil Ames (Ruth Hussey), arrive on the train, Maisie gets herself hired as Sybil's maid. The Ames are trying to rebuild their marriage, after Cliff found out about Sybil's lover, Ray Raymond (John Hubbard).

Maisie's warm personality gradually overcomes Slim's hostility (he had lost his previous job and served a year in jail for embezzlement to protect his prior girlfriend, only to find her with a new man when he got out), and she also becomes friends with Cliff.

One day, while Sybil is out, the cattle herd gets scattered. Maisie and Cliff volunteer to drive needed supplies to the old ranch house, but their car overturns on the way, pinning Cliff. Maisie limps to the house and walks in on Sybil and Ray kissing. When the ranch hands show up, Maisie sends them to help Cliff, who is not seriously injured.

That day, Slim asks Maisie to marry him, and she gleefully accepts. When Sybil confronts her in private about what she has seen, Maisie informs her that she has told no one, to spare Cliff's feelings, but Sybil is still fearful. Sybil tells Slim that Maisie has been after Cliff and only settled for him after she realized that Cliff was in love to his wife. When Slim questions Maisie, she takes offense, breaks off the engagement, and leaves the ranch.

Slim decides to go after her, but before he can, he hears a shot. Cliff has committed suicide after realizing his wife is still unfaithful. Slim is tried for murder. When Maisie finds out, she rushes to the courtroom, but is unable to convince the judge that Slim is innocent. Fortunately, Cliff had mailed a letter to his lawyer, Roger Bannerman (Richard Carle), to deliver to Maisie. It exonerates Slim. Maisie inherits the ranch and plenty of money to run it.


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