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The Feminine Touch

The Feminine Touch(1941)

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Digby College psychology professor John Hathaway is disgusted that his male students refuse to shave until they win their big football game and bristles when Dean Hutchinson suggests that the team's star, Rubber-legs Ryan, must pass an exam to be back on the team. Although Rubber-legs has a crush on John's beautiful wife Julie, John, who is writing a book that decries jealousy, is not upset, much to Julie's consternation. When John and Hutchinson argue over Rubber-leg's exam, John quits and moves with Julie to New York. At the offices of publisher Elliott Morgan, they meet his associate, Nellie Woods, a sophisticated woman who is secretly in love with Elliott. While John consults with Nellie on changes in his book, the jealous Julie meets the womanizing, goatee-sporting Elliott. Although handsome, Elliott does not appeal to Julie, whom John knows detests men with beards. At a party at his apartment, Elliott admits that he is attracted to Julie, and John suggests that he see a lot of Julie because she would be good for him. Soon, while Nellie and John spend time together working, Julie goes sightseeing with Elliott and is increasingly frustrated that John is not jealous. One day, when Julie comes home and sees John and Nellie hugging and drinking champagne, celebrating the sale of the serial rights for his book to a popular magazine, Julie's jealousy surprises John. Later, while they are riding a subway, Julie and John jokingly pretend that he is a masher and bystanders call a policeman. She tries to stop John's arrest but is pushed back onto the subway by the crowd. That evening, Nellie goes to Elliott's apartment and tells him that she is sick of how he has changed since he grew his beard. Just then, Julie arrives and, while Nellie sneaks out, Julie tells Elliott what has happened to John. Trying to take advantage of the situation, Elliott pretends to call his lawyer, Freddie Bond, and says that Freddie wants her to wait there. Elliott soon realizes, however, that Julie is a "good girl" and admits that he is defeated. Meanwhile, Nellie has called all of Elliott's friends and invited them to a come-as-you-are party. When they arrive and Freddie is among them, Julie is furious with Elliott and insists that Freddie go with her to get John. When Nellie returns to the apartment and tells Elliott that she is leaving both him and his company, he realizes his true feelings and proposes, promising that they will honeymoon in his cottage on an island in the Adirondacks as soon as he clears it of all vestiges of his past life. After John is released, Julie is infuriated when she tells him everything about Elliott, and he laughs instead of threatening to "knock Elliott's block off." The next morning, when flowers and a note of apology arrive from Elliott, Julie decides to meet him at his cabin after telling John that she is going apartment hunting. Soon Nellie arrives at the apartment to work, and when a telegram comes, John asks her to open it. Finding that it is from Julie, who has gone to the Adirondacks, Nellie thinks that Elliott has betrayed her and cannot believe that John is unperturbed. That evening, when Elliott finds Julie at the cabin, he is angry and worried that Nellie will find out and break their engagement, but Jule cannot leave because of a storm. The next morning, Julie is miserable because John has not come after her, and is elated when he finally arrives with Nellie. Nellie is furious at Elliott, and when John reveals that he is not jealous, Julie also becomes furious. John then tries to drag Julie down to the boat to take them to the mainland, but the boat gets away when he falls into the water. While John goes to bed with a cold, Julie states that she is leaving him because they are too different. When Nellie then tells John that he was right and that Julie and Elliott are completely innocent, a now cleanshaven Elliott appears, provoking John to threaten to beat his face to a pulp. Although both are out of shape, Elliott and John soon knock each other out. As Nellie and Julie, who is ecstatic over John's jealousy, comfort their men, they, too, start an argument that turns into a fight. A short time later, Julie and John are walking with the just married Elliott and Nellie, and Julie beams as John socks a man who says "Hello sugar" to her.