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Climbing High (1938)

Approved | | Comedy | 1 December 1938 (USA)
Wealthy young man Nicky (Sir Michael Redgrave) pretends to be poor to be close to model Diana (Jesse Matthews) though he's nearly engaged to aristocrat Lady Constance (Margaret Vyner).


Carol Reed


Lesser Samuels (based on an original story), Marion Dix (based on an original story) | 3 more credits »


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Complete credited cast:
Jessie Matthews ... Diana
Michael Redgrave ... Nicky
Noel Madison ... Gibson
Alastair Sim ... Max
Margaret Vyner ... Lady Constance
Mary Clare ... Lady Emily
Francis L. Sullivan ... Madman
Enid Stamp-Taylor ... Winnie (as Enid Stamp Taylor)
Torin Thatcher ... Jim
Tucker McGuire ... Patsey
Basil Radford ... Reggie
Athole Stewart Athole Stewart ... Uncle


Wealthy Nicky (Sir Michael Redgrave) finds himself engaged to gold-digger Lady Constance (Margaret Vyner), but he really loves scatty model Diana (Jesse Matthews). Complications, slapstick, and mountaineering are the result. Written by Allen Dace

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

giant fan | switzerland | modeling | See All (3) »




Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

1 December 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Climbing High See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording Noiseless Wide Range Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Filming originally started in April 1938, as "Asking For Trouble", a musical directed by Sonnie Hale, and starring Jessie Matthews, Kent Taylor, and Noel Madison, but was abandoned. See more »


Nicky: That girl who just came in - I want to see her.
Winnie: Well, you can't see her. She's busy. Do you know her?
Nicky: Do I know her? I love her. What's her name?
Winnie: Oh, you love her and you don't know her name?
Nicky: Now then, my proud beauty, one of these fine days you hope to meet the man who will marry you and who will be the father of your children. Do you know his name?
Winnie: [Shaking her head] No.
Nicky: Well, there you are. You see, names mean nothing.
See more »


Sweet and Low
Music by Joseph Barnby
Arranged by Louis Levy
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User Reviews

"I'm worried about Jim"
13 April 2012 | by howardmorleySee all my reviews

I could only give this farcical "comedy" 4/10 compared to the 5.2 on IMDb.com.I agree with the previous user comments and tuned into this film after searching on Michael Redgrave hoping for a similar experience to "The Lady Vanishes" (1938).As usual in Britsh comedy/farces there is a lot of running around, characters misunderstanding names and highly improbable sudden scene changes like when you are suddenly catapulted from London, England to alpine Switzerland.I must give a mention to Mary Clare, familiar to me from playing the baroness in "The Lady Vanishes" and the landlady in "A Girl Must Live" (1939).Here she plays Lady Emily Westaker who is trying to marry off her daughter, Lady Constance (Margaret Vyner), by any means to Michael Redgrave who plays a playboy who nearly runs Jessie Matthews over and almost immediately attempts to seriously woo her.It was at this point reality was left far behind.I had only ever heard Jessie when I was young playing Mrs Dale the wife of a doctor in "Mrs Dales Diary", whose memorable line was "I'm worried about Jim".I understand Jessie could sing and the producers contrived to give vent to her singing voice albeit in a strange farcical setting when Francis L Sullivan, playing an overweight opera loving madman, accosts Jessie and only lets her go when she shows her singing ability.

Basil Radford made an appearance playing Michael Redgrave's best friend, and for once he didn't have his partner Naunton Wayne in tow.Basil did films on his own like "The Galloping Major".The funniest scene was pure slapstick when the speed control of a wind machine in the advertising studio is set to maximum and mayhem inevitably results.It was strange seeing Alastair Sim playing a purposely out of work communist and showing his torso!Another actor not lost on me was Torin Thatcher who played Bentley Drummle in the acclaimed 1946 version of "Great Expectations" in David Lean's classic film.Comedy could be rather infantile in the 30s.

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