Great entertainment for squares! But so corny I could hardly stand it. I had to stop halfway through and get a pint of ice cream to make it bearable. Then it did start getting better, with some movie magic flourishes, and in the last scene Stanwyck pulls out all the stops. 3.5*
It's a shame Capra never had the chance to adapt an Ayn Rand novel...just imagine Capra's take on 'Atlas Shrugged'. Capra's classic blend of Americana and socialism is on full view here in this '41 stable and its message is not mislaid by its schmaltzy 'everyman' story. Cooper and Stanwyck play to type and Arnold makes a good slimy politician. Nowhere near as dated as it should rightfully be though...alas.
could've been great but spiraled out of control over the top, especially in the final scene which ends up completely smothering the radical elements earlier in the film (the planted cops starting riots, the subversive feminism, the mass media manipulation) which could never get through a major hollywood studio today. barbara stanwyck is great though
Surprisingly, not as vapid as other Capra crap, but I'm thinking it had something to do with Cooper and Stanwyck. Like always, though, my patience wore thin after halfway and all the heavyhanded "message" shit.
Viewing "Meet John Doe" was the first time I recognized that I had any critical discernment. I was watching one of the early scenes with Stanwyck. I remember thinking, "God, she's good." The film itself is very uneven and muddled.
John Doe had me running loops around my head trying to parse its meta construct. As the bigwigs attempt to capitalise on the little man, is the film not another marketing tool for the unification of the masses. Sure the message is hope but I couldn't help siding with Brennan's skepticism, which in itself is a byproduct of too much apathy. Starts strong, weighed down by characters and seriousness.