Friday, January 06, 2012


Bob Hope is a struggling writer, newly married to former model Shirley Ross. They are living in a nice Manhattan apartment in relative bliss except they're behind on the rent. Publisher Otto Kruger (a former boyfriend of Ross's) has read some chapters of Hope's book and says they show promise, but that Hope needs to concentrate more on the book and less on his work and social life. He quits his job and his wife goes back to work as a model, but it's harder to drop their fun-loving friends, including boozehound couple Charles Butterworth and Hedda Hopper, and Roscoe Karns, who has just married an older woman (Laura Hope Crews) for her money. Soon, Hope is upset over his stay-at-home house-husband role, and he's not terribly happy when Ross and Kruger seem to be getting quite friendly. When the pretty Southern belle next door starts hanging around, the stage is set for comic misunderstandings. As is often the case in romantic comedies of the era, a pregnancy solves everything.

Hope and Ross had sung "Thanks for the Memory" earlier in the year in THE BIG BROADCAST OF 1938 and it became his signature song so it seems likely that this movie was rushed through to capitalize on the song. The script, based on a play, is OK but nothing special. What makes this worth watching are a good supporting cast and Hope's effortless comic style. Butterworth is especially good; he's usually fun to see, but here his delivery is drier and less emphatic than in his earlier films. Karns is good, too, and his early scene with Crews is a highlight of the film. Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson gets a couple good lines as the building janitor. Light comedy was not Kruger's forte, but his role is small enough that he can be ignored. In addition to the title song, Hope and Ross also sing a cute song called "Two Sleepy People." [DVD]

No comments: