"Garbo laughs!" was the tagline on the Ninotchka poster at the time – a rarity for the originally Swedish actress Greta Garbo, who was famous for her serious and melancholic roles. Here she was starring in a typical Lubitsch comedy, a film full of sharp dialogues with a sensual, almost erotic intensity. It was Garbo's penultimate role.
Three Soviet agents are sent to Paris to sell jewels confiscated by the Communists during the Russian Revolution of 1917. But they quickly succumb to the temptations of the capitalist West. Moscow decides to send People's Commissar Nina Ivanovna "Ninotchka" Yakushova (Garbo). She is unyielding, incorruptible and deadly serious. Then she meets Count Leon d'Algout.