10 SEPTEMBER 1948, Page 13

..Don't Listen, Ladies !" By Stephen Powys and Guy Bolton

from the French of Sacha Guitry. (St. James's.) MISOGYNIST is hardly the word for the elderly, successful and almost involuntary amorist around whom this frothy and agreeable comedy revolves. " I Love to Dance, but Oh! my Feet! " an adver- tisement formerly lamented, and M. Bachelet—married twice, deceived he cannot be certain how often, if indeed at all—is anxious to impart to the audience his considerable experience of real and imaginary bunions. The sources of his most recent experience and the violently interacting causes of his current doubts and distractions are his wife and his ex-wife. Now purring, now spitting, ignes fatui who resent automatically and elude with ease his attempts to localise their incandescence, Miss Constance Cummings and Miss Betty Marsden flit in and out of the Paris antique shop where M. Bachelet conducts his business and maintains a home of which they have both been mistress. This is one of those farces flavoured with high comedy in which the events that occur are only slightly less diverting than the events whose occurrence is narrowly averted. I do not suppose that it is done at the St. James's quite as well as M. Guitry did it in Paris ; but it is done very well indeed, and Mr. Francis Lister gives a most subtle and persuasive account of the irresistible male whose conquests give him so much trouble. Miss Cummings and Miss Marsden act as fetchingly as they look, Miss Ada Reeve is effective as a revenante from a gay youth im- mortalised by Toulouse Lautrec. and Mr. Denholm Elliott does well as the young assistant in a rather unusual shop. A very enter-