The title Girls' Dormitory is vaguely reminiscent of 1950s exploitation fare like Reform School Girl or 1970s AIP stuff like School For Unclaimed Girls. Girls' Dormitory (1936), however, has a lot more in common with Finishing School (1934), and it marked the first appearance of French babytalk girl Simone Simon. Darryl Zanuck, the famous horndog of 20th Century Fox who was rather famous for personally taste-testing his starlets, discovered her in France and brought her to the United States. There was a huge publicity campaign. The American public was taught to pronounce her name "See-moan See-moan." In Girls' Dormitory, Simone plays opposite Herbert Marshall, a school headmaster, and Ruth Chatterton, a sympathetic teacher. Through much of the picture, Marshall is oblivious to the fact that both Chatterton and Simon are in love with him. Chatterton and Marshall are top-notch actors. Character actor John Qualen, who seems to be in about every tenth film I watch, plays a handyman. The DVD release of Girls' Dormitory is presented as a Tyrone Power picture, but that handsome youngster only has about 90 seconds of screen time very near the end of the story. Zanuck made sure that Simon got flattering lighting and lots of long close-ups. She was 26 at the time, she's playing a 19-year-old, and she looks about 16. Majorly scary. It must have driven Zanuck crazy. In any event, Girls' Dormitory is about a girls' school and has very little to do with the actual dormitory. Some of the teachers are closet-Fascists, but there are always one or two of those in a girls' school tale, right? And it doesn't turn out quite the way one would anticipate; I guessed the ending wrong myself.