Free-thinking Johnny Case finds himself betrothed to a millionaire’s daughter. When her family wants him to settle down to big business, he rebels, wishing instead to spend the early years of his life on “holiday.”
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Absolutely lovely. An inspection of the issues regarding extreme wealth and its effects on those it entangles, Grant searches for a life beyond material wealth, while those around him seek to bend him, namely his fiancee and future father-in-law. The script constantly illuminating the role of the house as a visual representation of wealth in its vastness, one room stands out as a symbol of a certain freedom.
Under-appreciated Philadelphia Story 'prequel' in which Hepburn finds her feet as the socialite with a soul, and Cary Grant plumbs the depths of the working class dreamer James Stewart would mint as Macaulay Connor (and Grant himself would replicate again in Talk of the Town). Even more overlooked perhaps is Lew Ayres, as Hepburn's alcoholic brother, who shows some real Jack Lemmon-esque acting chops.
Very well written and acted, but the second act drags. It feels as though the first act is very rushed, which could be said it's a representation of the character's hasty wedding, but then it completely slows downs at the new years party. But overall, Hepburn and Grant are super enjoyable. Very nice.
Cary Grant, excellent as he is, is not usually to my taste in his comedies, but this was an unexpected gem. Pretty subversive for glamorous Hollywood, insightful and very smart, it balances these qualities with humour and Hepburn doing silly acrobatics. Give up the big, money-making office job to sail the seas with a couple of university professors and the "black ship" of the rich family, what a kickass idea!
A melancholic comedy. Unspoken desires and class tensions flow underneath the surface of this story of people who are just trying to find where they belong in the world. The entire cast has such magnetic chemistry, but of course Hepburn and Grant shine brightest as the pair who don't know, and then don't want to admit, that they belong together.
Hepburn! Grant! But don't be fooled that this is just a screwball comedy- while some bits are motormouth charming and funny like His Girl Friday and The Awful Truth, there's also a very dark undercurrent about the relationships between love, class and expectations. Highly recommended.
Great stuff. Hepburn and Grant are reliably superb and the whole thing is effervescent, but there's also a surprising undertow of sadness and darkness and it feels deeply relevant still to the world we inhabit today. Has profound things to say about society's mixed-up priorities, but it says them in the least portentous way imaginable.
Foolish politics in a world of childish characters. The Golden Age of Hollywood was as full of conservatism as it was of blandness. When the sweetness of it all does not make for the sillyness of its comedy, let alone its infantile social commentary, the result is a feeling of awkwardness. Take away the special chemistry between Hepburn and Grant and what is left simply is a forgettable silly joke.