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Westward Passage

Westward Passage(1932)

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After enjoying a romantic honeymoon at a country inn, Olivia and Nick Allen return to their city apartment and begin to quarrel. While Nick, a burgeoning novelist, complains that his publisher wants to turn him into a "hack" writer, Olivia frets over their lack of space and money. When Olivia then announces that she is pregnant, Nick expresses his disappointment and his apprehension about their future. Three years later, Nick, still struggling with his writing, explodes when he discovers that his young daughter Olivia has been playing with his typewriter and, following a tirade against his chaotic home life, threatens to move into a place of his own. Concerned for Olivia's happiness, businessman Harry Ottendorf, a longtime admirer, talks to Nick about changing his ways, but Nick, overcome with jealousy, accuses Olivia of adultery and sues for divorce. Harry and Olivia then marry, and six years later, vacation in Europe with little Olivia. While in Lucerne, Switzerland, Olivia runs into Nick, who is in Europe promoting his new novel. Now a success, Nick immediately displays his interest in Olivia and, in spite of her protests, insists that they dine together after Harry has been called to Chicago on business. Olivia, sensing her own re-kindled attraction to Nick, declares her devotion to the kind Harry but fails to discourage Nick, who then shows up on the same Chicago-bound ocean liner on which she is booked. During the voyage, Nick pursues his ex-wife ardently and re-introduces himself to his confused daughter. By the time the boat reaches Chicago, Olivia's will has weakened and, when Harry fails to show up at the dock to meet her, gives in to Nick's invitation to visit his country home. On the way, Nick stops at the same inn where Olivia and he had honeymooned, and there Olivia finally admits that she still loves Nick. After Olivia agrees to leave Harry, the reunited couple prepares to spend the evening at Nick's home but soon find themselves quarreling bitterly over the same trivial matters that had plagued them years before. Unlike before, however, the couple decides to cease fighting and continue their "westward passage" toward love and understanding.