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Eternally Yours (1939)

aka Eternally Yours

"She lived at the edge of life - with out-stretched arms . . . too short to reach it! Romance - a baffling reality."

Directed By: 
Details: 95 mins · English


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Small Anita Halstead
Small Tony aka The Great Arturo
Small Aunt Abby
Small Gramps aka Bishop Peabody
Small Mrs. Cary Bingham
Small Don Burns
Small Gloria


No_movie_poster Tay Garnett Director
No_movie_poster C. Graham Baker Writer
No_movie_poster Gene Towne Writer
No_movie_poster Walter Wanger Production


"She lived at the edge of life - with out-stretched arms . . . too short to reach it! Romance - a baffling reality."


Anital Halstead (Loretta Young) goes to see a magic act performed by Tony (David Niven), the "Great Arturo", after her bridal shower for her wedding to Don Burns (Broderick Crawford). Anita and Tony are immediately attracted to each other and get married. She becomes his assistant in the act.

One night, Tony becomes drunk in the company of a woman reporter and boasts he will jump out of an airplane at 15,000 feet (4,600 m) with his hands handcuffed behind his back. When she prints his claim, he first tries to get out of it with a fake cast on his arm, but when he sees the thousands of fans, he goes through with it, freeing himself in mid-air and parachuting safely to the ground. He promises Anita that he will not attempt the dangerous stunt again, but soon breaks his word and performs it repeatedly all over the world.

Anita becomes weary of the constant travel and longs to settle down and start a family. Secretly, she sells her jewelry and has a house built in the Connecticut countryside. When it is completed, she shows Tony a picture of it, but his uninterested reaction stops her from telling him it is theirs. When he signs up for a two-year, round-the-world tour rather than take the vacation he had promised, she finally gives up. She leaves him and gets a divorce in Reno. Anita's grandfather, Bishop Peabody (C. Aubrey Smith), breaks the news to the distraught Tony.

On a sea cruise with her Aunt Abby (Billie Burke), Anita is surprised to run into her old fiance Don. She gets the ship's captain to marry them. However, she spends their honeymoon night with her grandfather. The next night, Don insists on introducing her to his boss, Harley Bingham (Raymond Walburn), at a nightclub. The entertainment is none other than the Great Arturo, with his old assistant, Lola De Vere (Virginia Field). He soon persuades Bingham to let him perform at Bingham's company retreat at a resort, much to Anita's discomfort.

Mrs. Bingham (Zazu Pitts) has a dilemma though. They have not booked enough rooms to provide separate bedrooms for the unmarried Tony and Lola. Tony suggests he and Don share one room, while Anita and Lola take the other. During his stay, Tony tries unsuccessfully to persuade Anita to take him back. Meanwhile, the hapless Don becomes sick, and the doctor prescribes no physical activity of any sort for a month.

Bishop Peabody is told by his lawyer that Anita's divorce is not legal. Later, he informs his granddaughter that Tony will be doing his parachute stunt that day. She attends. Tony tells his valet and friend Benton (Hugh Herbert) that he hid a lockpick in the wrong airplane, but goes ahead with the trick anyway. He frees himself dangerously close to the ground. After he is pulled unconscious out of the water, Anita rushes to his side. When he regains consciousness, they are reconciled. In the final scene, they enter their Connecticut home.