Friday, February 12, 2010

#245 - His Girl Friday

Breakdown: His Girl Friday (1940). Play written by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur. Screenplay written by Charles Lederer. Directed by Howard Hanks. Starring Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell.

A newspaper editor uses every trick in the book to keep his ace reporter ex-wife from remarrying.

Review: What we've learned about 1930s-1940s cinema so far: Frank Capra was a monster. We'll be hitting on more of his films as a director (It's a Wonderful Life, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, among others) later in the list, but our first two films with Capra as an actor, although reputable, don't quite compare. In His Girl Friday, Capra and Rosalind Russel steal the show with their all-too-believable roles as cynical ex-lovers, but its predictable ending leaves whatever happens until then feeling a bit lackluster. Really, we're just waiting for North by Northwest.

Favorite Quote:
Walter: Sorta wish you hadn't done that, Hildy.
Hildy: Done what?
Walter: Divorced me. Makes a fella lose all faith in himself. Gives him a...almost gives him a feeling he wasn't wanted.
Hildy: Oh, now look, junior...that's what divorces are FOR!


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