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This dialog comes from the movie "Living" (2022)

a subordinate accidentally meets her boss on the street wearing a new hat

  • Oh! Oh, it is you.I was quite thrown there for a minute. I mean by your new hat.
  • ahh, yes. I lost my old one.
  • I do wonder what they'll make of it at the office.
  • What would be your guess, Miss Harris? Will my new hat go down a storm there?
  • Noah himself couldn't get something to go down a storm with that lot.
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    go down storm To have great success, especially with an audience. Are you aware of the biblical tale about Noah's ark?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented May 19 at 16:51
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    "with that lot" refers to the workers in the office, who sound like a sullen uninspired group.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented May 19 at 16:53
  • I've never encountered this exact metaphoric usage before. Presumably the speaker is assuming Noah must have been exceptionally good at persuading his "passengers" (animals, not people) to get on the ark. It might have been difficult to persuade Mr and Mrs Antelope to do so if they could see Mr and Mrs Tiger already on board and watching their next 40 days' worth of dinners coming along on the gangway! Personally, I think it's a clumsy metaphoric usage, not remotely "clever" or "clear". Commented May 19 at 17:05
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    I don't think a new hat is much of an event to "go down a storm". Another comment mentions "drew down a storm" which has a different meaning. Commented May 19 at 17:37
  • @WeatherVane: Interesting. I never thought of draw [down] a storm [of protest], which as you say is a completely different idiom. But see my comment about the full OED entry for go down a storm under DrMoishe's answer. They obviously thought it was worth including an 1820 cite of drew down a storm, But when I look at it again in light of your comment, it seems pretty obvious to me that "flat performance" would have ended by drawing a storm of abuse and criticism - it seems unlikely it improved so much that they gave it a standing ovation at the end! Commented May 19 at 20:15

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