Her Highness and the Bellboy (1945) is a pleasant romantic comedy. Hedy Lamarr gets star billing as Princess Veronica, a European royal who has fallen for a common American reporter named Paul (Warner Anderson). She travels to New York City, hoping to find Paul again.
Instead, she meets a sweet bellhop named Jimmy (Robert Walker) at the hotel where she’s staying. He mistakes her for a new maid when they first meet, but she soon takes him as her escort. In turn, he falls for her and becomes convinced that he is the commoner that she has fallen in love with.
Meanwhile, Jimmy continues to visit his immobile girlfriend Leslie (June Allyson), who obviously does not approve of his new friendship with the princess. Leslie is truly in love with him – a fact to which he seems completely oblivious. Double love triangles ensue as Veronica continues on the hunt for her reporter, Jimmy pines for the princess and Leslie keeps dreaming about a future with Jimmy.
Robert Walker is his usual charming and extremely endearing self in this role. While the viewer may be frustrated by the way he casts Leslie to the side in favor of the princess, it’s impossible to feel disdain for Walker. He is the perfect embodiment of boyish charm, and despite all of his personal troubles was able to carry off solid comedic performances time and time again.
Lamarr is also very beautiful as usual and gives a good performance. But she is easily and surprisingly out-shined by June Allyson, who really stands out in this film. Allyson is more sincere and believable here than she is in most of her other films. Her performance is better than usual and really shows what she was capable of.
This film marks the end of Lamarr’s contract with MGM. It has been said that Hedy thought this film was absolutely terrible, but I’m inclined to disagree with her a bit.
While it is certainly no masterpiece, the film isn’t a total piece of trash. It’s fun and clever, though obviously very fluffy. All in all, it’s a decent romantic comedy. It shouldn’t be taken seriously, but it shouldn’t be forgotten and ignored either. Is it a bit typical? Yes. Are complicated love triangles upon love triangles overdone? Certainly. But the film is still highly enjoyable, especially for fans of the romantic comedy genre. The score: 2.8/5