She was unquestionably the most popular and famous child star in the history of the silver screen! Now two specially selected films from Shirley Temple's amazing motion picture career are here for the first time on DVD in this charming collection. Sit back and enjoy the films that delighted Depression-era audiences, and helped make this multi-talented, curly-topped superstar one of the biggest box-office sensations of all time. It's the fabulous Shirley Temple at her finest - singing, dancing and laughing her way through this fabulous 2-movie collection that's sure to become a favorite of the entire family. Little Miss Marker The adorable Shirley Temple single-handedly melts the hearts of a gang of hardened gangsters when she's left as an IOU or "marker" for a debt, in this heartwarming Damon Runyon story that will never cease to delight. Now and Forever The irresistible Shirley Temple stars with screen legends Gary Cooper and Carole Lombard in this endearing tale of love, honor and sacrifice that will steal your heart away - now and forever.
Shirley Temple's superstardom in the 1930s was associated with Twentieth Century Fox, but before Fox locked her down she made the two films for Paramount bundled here. It was 1934, her breakthrough year, and these pictures are not quite yet the showcase vehicles Fox would assemble for their pint-sized meal ticket. In Little Miss Marker
, Shirley comes under the wing of Sorrowful Jones (Adolphe Menjou in good form), as Damon Runyon's world of bookies and gamblers and soft-hearted gangsters comes to life around her. It's a heartstring-tugger of an expert kind; Shirley's final line, delivered in an operating room, should have grown men weeping on their knees.
Henry Hathaway's Now and Forever casts Gary Cooper and Carole Lombard as world-traveling con artists, suddenly forced to grow up when Coop decides to take charge of his daughter. The lure of diamonds and the easy life is never far away, but rely on Shirley to keep her Daddy on his toes. The dimpled Ms. Temple plays a distinctly supporting role in this one, and her singing and dancing is limited compared to the vehicles she would command within the year. Cooper is all charm, although Lombard is stuck in something of a nag role. Still, a solid enough studio picture of the era, and a logical launching pad for the greatest child star in film history. --Robert Horton