This kiss is from the end of Holiday (1938, USA) [so it's a spoiler].
The movie's an old favorite of mine (despite some atrociously embarrassing dialogue), but I only noticed the kiss when I saw the movie for the dozenth time the other night, as part of a Cary Grant film fest at a local theater.
In Holiday, Cart Grant plays Johnny, a guy from poor background who wants to quit working and search for the meaning of life.
He's engaged to Julia (Doris Nolan, below), a woman he believes to be "the perfect playmate" to join him in the search.In fact, Julia ambitions match those of her 19th-cent. grandfather, an industrialist who "stole a railroad from the stockholders."
BELOW: Johnny first realizes his betrothed is filthy rich when he goes to meet her family. (Has someone written about Cary Grant and staircases?)
(Screencap from Only the Cinema.)
Moping about the Fifth Ave.
Johnny and soon-to-be sister-in-law Linda play well together.
And talk well together. (screencap from Riku Writes]
And dance. A worried Johnny confesses to Linda his dawning doubts about Julia (she wants him to go into banking); but Linda, who misunderstands her sister, pushes him not to break his engagement, even though she has fallen in love with him herself.
Finally Julia gets fed up with Johnny's talk of freedom and chooses the man who is obviously her true love--her unimaginative, conformist father.
Linda, realizing the massive mistake she has made, tells her family where they can get off and runs to find Johnny, who is just about to sail to France.
She finds him face down on the ship's floor, having failed to pull off the acrobatic move he always does to cheer himself up, the backwards flip-flop.
He is delighted to see her, and reaches for her hand. Kneeling next to him, she leans over and kisses him.
It's a nice twist on the Sleeping Beauty story--the man awakens the repressed woman, but she's the one who plants the kiss. (And open-mouth, too.)
(I screencapped the kiss from youTube, where you can watch the whole movie.)
Holiday was directed by George Cukor (below, with costars Grant and Katharine Hepburn). It was an open secret in Hollywood that Cukor was gay.
Ostensibly about straight people, Cukor's movies, from Sylvia Scarlett (1935) to My Fair Lady (1964), are often about the tension of acting a role in real life or leading a double-life.
BELOW: Katharine Hepburn, disguised as a young man, with Cary Grant, in Sylvia Scarlett:
Sometimes in Cukor's films the tension tears people apart (A Double Life, A Star Is Born), but often it resolves happily.
Holiday, of course, is happy, as both Johnny and Linda chose not to accept a life of social conformity.
Hepburn said she and Grant had a lot of fun working together, and I think that shows. Here, they're getting ready for the drop and roll acrobatics they perform in the movie.