High Sierra : Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

But she wasn't the brightest. Her rich boyfriend couldn't be seen with someone in her condition, so he got rid of her. He could have easily paid for her surgery, but instead he cast her out. It was only when someone else had taken care of the problem that he was willing to take her back and pay the price for her leg being fixed. It doesn't take too much imagination to figure out how a marriage like that would have ended up. It'd start off good, but eventually lead them on the road to divorce.

Youthful infatuation.

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

I found the Ida Lupino character (Marie) more appealing. That's just me.

-30-

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Marie had depth, Velma was shallow.
Sometimes if you're looking for a Rose, you overlook an Orchid

Love The Oldies

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Ida Lupino rocked it.

She really rocked it in 'They Drive by Night' . .

She was an English beauty, imo. Her street smarts made her even sexier..


-- 'you're a good man, sister.' Humphrey Bogart

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Bogie's situation was very similar though; Velma was more beautiful, but Marie was more faithful.


"Why do you find it so hard to believe?"
"Why do you find it so easy?"
"It's never BEEN easy!"

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

I'm a female (no homo) and I thought Ida Lupino was prettier than Joan Leslie.

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Sometimes if you're looking for a Rose, you overlook an Orchid

I like that.

Bogie's situation was very similar though; Velma was more beautiful, but Marie was more faithful.

I can't blame her for not rushing into Bogie's arms but she shouldn't have taken her old boyfriend back.

I'm a female (no homo) and I thought Ida Lupino was prettier than Joan Leslie.

lol. Women are allowed to compliment other women on their appearance without automatically being assumed to play for the other team. It's only (straight) guys who aren't allowed to say "Hey, he looks nice."

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

I saw 'Born to be Bad' a few days before this one and I though Joan Leslie looked much prettier in that one than in this even though that came out 9 years later.

I thought she was pretty until I saw Lupino and I have to say I agree. I thought Lupino much prettier than Joan Leslie. At least in this movie.


Very good. But brick not hit back!

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Yeah thats what I thought too. Unfortunately it worked well with the movie, Roy being a bit jealous and annoyed towards Velma but that would make sense, he probably shouldnt have expected her to marry him and get annoyed when she didnt want to but she didnt have to rub it in his face either during Roy's final visit.
I didnt really like her bf/guy back at home either for the reasons the OP mentioned. Roy probably deserved her over him but thats the way things go eh ;)

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Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

This movie was 40 years ahead of it's time and the John Hughes 80's movies. The main character falls for the pretty one/football player/cheerleader, but he or she is shallow and the best friend is the one who's truly faithful. Same with the triangle of Roy-Velma-Marie .

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

I agree that Velma wasn't smart to stick with that old boyfriend who obviously didn't really care about her...but then, she was more shallow herself, compared to Ida's character, so maybe she deserves a shallow guy.

I was pleasantly surprised though, that her character showed some emotion and regret about hurting Roy, when she turned down his marriage proposal. I mean, she was insensitive when he came back to see her that last time, but I attribute that to her shallow childishness again. Too busy revelling in the fact that she can dance, self-centered like most young people, therefore not observant of Roy's feelings. Besides, doesn't she have a right to express joy over her ability to dance, and her engagement to a man she loves? (Even if she's misguided about him.)

Based on all the critics' thoughts I read about this movie before seeing it, I was expecting Joan Leslie's character to be conniving and evil, leading Bogie on just so he'd pay for her operation, then dropping him. I suppose you can interpret her actions that way, if you ignore the genuine tears in the "I know how much he's done for me, but I just don't love him!" scene with her grandfather. But, considering that, I'm surprised at reviews for this film demonizing Joan's character. It makes me wonder if they just think Bogie's "entitled" to her because he "bought" her, or something. Which is pretty offensive.

Maybe he shouldn't have been expecting a much younger girl to think of him romantically? How was she to know that he wasn't just helping her out of kindness, no strings attached, out of friendship with her grandfather or something? After all, it's not like he proposed before her operation and she accepted, only to dump him once she was fixed up and able to get someone "better". That's kind of what I expected to happen, based on reviews. But Joan didn't play her role like a manipulative seductive type... and I don't think it was written that way either. She seemed truly naive and innocent (until her old boyfriend came back, and it can be argued he's a bad influence on her, combined with the excitement of being "normal", going to her head a bit.)

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Let me just say, crispy_comments, that I love your post on Velma in High Sierra. Not only is it perfectly written, but you've expressed it much better than I could have.



Based on all the critics' thoughts I read about this movie before seeing it, I was expecting Joan Leslie's character to be conniving and evil, leading Bogie on just so he'd pay for her operation, then dropping him. I suppose you can interpret her actions that way, if you ignore the genuine tears in the "I know how much he's done for me, but I just don't love him!" scene with her grandfather. But, considering that, I'm surprised at reviews for this film demonizing Joan's character. It makes me wonder if they just think Bogie's "entitled" to her because he "bought" her, or something. Which is pretty offensive.
Maybe he shouldn't have been expecting a much younger girl to think of him romantically? How was she to know that he wasn't just helping her out of kindness, no strings attached, out of friendship with her grandfather or something? After all, it's not like he proposed before her operation and she accepted, only to dump him once she was fixed up and able to get someone "better". That's kind of what I expected to happen, based on reviews. But Joan didn't play her role like a manipulative seductive type... and I don't think it was written that way either. She seemed truly naive and innocent (until her old boyfriend came back, and it can be argued he's a bad influence on her, combined with the excitement of being "normal", going to her head a bit.)




Exactly. From the reviews I've read, I was expecting Velma to be this two-faced, duplicitous minx who put on this "sweet little girl from the country" facade to string Bogie along, make him fall for her, have him pay for the operation, then drop him like a bad habit. But it wasn't like that at all. She was friends with him. Why not? He's friends with her grandfather.

Let's look at this from Velma's point of view: she has a clubfoot, which was at one time a social stigma in addition to being a disability. Velma's had to miss out on sports, dances, and who knows what else. Now this friend of her grandfather's is "generously" offering to pay for an operation to treat her clubfoot. You're all telling me that none of you would pounce on that offer in a heartbeat? None of you? And now, just hours after the operation, this friend who is more than twice your age and has never so much as taken you out on a date proposes?! Wouldn't that throw you for one hell of a loop? After all, Roy never mentioned any strings attached, and just proposes to Velma, fully expecting her to accept. Well, you know what? I think Roy is the villain here. Giving someone a life-changing operation they've dreamed of having with the condition that they marry you, regardless of their personal feelings, is emotional manipulation of the highest order. Maybe Velma kind of owes him something, but marriage?! That's one hell of a demand to make on anyone, especially a naive 20-year-old you barely know! I really hate the idea that you are obligated to love someone. Rubbish. You don't have to love anyone, no matter how wonderful they are. Everyone isn't going to love you, and you certainly aren't going to love everyone. I agree with the above comments that people think Roy is "entitled" to Velma, and I find that attitude disgusting. Velma is a human being entitled to make her own choices.

Now, I'm not trying to paint Velma as a saint here. I agree she should have been a little classier when Roy came to call, and it doesn't reflect well on her judgment or self-respect going back to her shallow ex. However, it is her life, and it's her mistake to make. Who knows? Maybe in time the relationship will sour and she'll grow up and find someone nicer. I also roll my eyes when critics say she becomes a "hellion" overnight. Oh yes, what an amoral vixen, dancing with three other people in her living room, listening to music at medium volume! Throw her in a convent, that'll straighten her out!

What's my point? Velma is not perfect… but Roy isn't either. To be perfectly frank, I think both Velma and Marie are much too good for Roy!

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Hey, thank you very much, lauraeileen894! So true, "it's her mistake to make", and I agree with you about looking at things from Velma's POV. Roy's actions do come across as rather manipulative. Good point about him proposing out of the blue when they'd never even been on a date. Bizarre! Not likely to be a successful approach. ;) Sure does make it seem like he felt entitled to her just because he paid for her operation. But people definitely shouldn't feel obligated to love/marry anyone. Love doesn't work that way... You'd only end up resenting the other person.

Great snark on that "amoral vixen" needing to be sent to a convent. :P Dancing is surely a sinful pastime. ;) And how dare she make her own decisions and choose her own happiness, instead of putting a man's needs/wishes ahead of her own! Yeah, I can't help noticing gender issues when watching movies. :) And it's fun to analyze how other people react to/interpret characters like Velma and Roy. Glad I'm not the only one!

Sorry it took me awhile to respond, but I gave up on checking this thread (good thing I got bored today and went through old posts ;)) What a nice surprise to see someone replied to my post after all! Thanks again for letting me know you liked it, and sharing your own thoughts.

Re: Velma was cute and she had a good heart.

Awww, no problem, crispy_comments! Thanks for backing me up, I was worried I was the only one who had issues with the Velma subplot in High Sierra (seriously, did they even need that subplot anyway?).

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