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William A. Wellman
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Beautiful high society type Doris Worthington is entertaining guests on her yacht in the Pacific when it hits a reef and sinks. She makes her way to an island with the help of singing sailor Stephen Jones. Her friend Edith, Uncle Hubert, and Princes Michael and Alexander make it to the same island but all prove to be useless in the art of survival. The sailor is the only one with the practical knowhow to survive but Doris and the others snub his leadership offer. That is until he starts a clam bake and wafts the fumes in their starving faces. The group gradually gives into his leadership, the only question now is if Doris will give into his charms. Written by
Gary Jackson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. See more »
Right before the "Once in a Blue Moon" number, there is a long shot of Stephen holding Doris under the moon. His lips are moving in this brief shot as if he's singing to her, but there is no vocal on the soundtrack. See more »
I can’t say that I was particularly looking forward to this musical comedy, but it turned out to be a very entertaining 1 hour and 14 minutes. Being a Bing Crosby vehicle (albeit featured on Universal’s Carole Lombard set), there’s a plethora of dated romantic songs – and since a young (not to say slim) Ethel Merman appears in support, she chimes in as well…and so does comic Leon Errol!
Still, as I said, it’s a generally fun seafaring ride (inspired by J.M. Barrie’s “The Admirable Crichton”) – though given a rather silly and entirely meaningless title! Also in the cast are another comic couple – George Burns (who really achieved stardom after an Oscar-winning turn some 40 years later!) and real-life spouse Gracie Allen – and a young (though somewhat stiff) Ray Milland as one of two aristocratic parasites hoping to win Lombard’s hand. However, she’s got her eyes on crooning sailor Crosby – but, of course, their relationship runs far from smoothly!
Starting off on Lombard’s yacht, the group are shipwrecked on a tropical island (thanks to a tipsy Errol sabotaging the boat’s commands) – where explorers Burns and Allen(!) are carrying out some kind of research. Actually, the two parties rarely interact: in fact, very little happens on the island itself – other than that the feckless idle rich are taught a moral lesson by the manly and resourceful Crosby (anticipating Lombard’s own MY MAN GODFREY  in this respect).
It’s refreshing to find Lombard in a non-wacky role, but her performance is just as delightful as ever; equally notable are the amusing contribution of Errol (Lombard’s uncle but who’s sympathetic to commoner Crosby) and the various antics of the harebrained Allen (which includes her devising an unlikely and complicated method to trap wild animals). Even so, an amiable bear named Droopy (Lombard’s pet!) steals everybody’s thunder – especially in the way it cuddles up to Crosby when singing a particular tune, and a hilarious scene in which the animal runs riot on the deck of the yacht after Errol fits it with skating shoes! There’s even a joke at the expense of another Paramount star, Mae West, when a sailor describes the acronym ‘B.C.’ as ‘Before “Come Up And See Me, Sometime”’.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful.
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