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An American businessman's family convinces him to buy a Scottish castle and disassemble it to ship it to America brick by brick, where it will be put it back together. The castle though is not the only part of the deal, with it goes the several-hundred year old ghost who haunts it. Written by
Ken Yousten <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In this very delightful fantasy, a joint Anglo-American production with Alexander Korda doing it in the United Kingdom and it being partnered by Samuel Goldwyn over on this side of the pond, Robert Donat gets to do two of his best characterizations. Donat plays a 20th century Scot's Laird, forced to sell the family ancestral castle to pay some bills. Along with the castle a ghost goes with it, also played by Donat.
A brief prologue gives us the reason why Donat is haunting the place. He showed up late for a battle with the invading redcoats and his father Morton Selten puts a curse on him. He's to be earth bound until he makes some guy from the rival clan do a little crawling to him in response to the ragging Selten has taken from this other crowd.
So Donat the ghost has been haunting the family digs for about 200 years plus and his descendant is looking to sell the place. American food tycoon Eugene Palette wants to buy it and Mr. Palette has a lovely daughter in Jean Parker who Donat finds attractive. The castle is taken apart, stone by stone, to be reassembled in Florida and of course The Ghost Goes West with it.
If there's a Lubitsch touch for comedy, there's certainly a Rene Clair touch for fantasy. The Ghost Goes West is really a delightful film with Donat's dual performance stealing the show. It's as light and airy as other Clair English language masterpieces as I Married A Witch and It Happened Tomorrow. Do not miss it if it is ever broadcast and it's an indisputable part of any projected Robert Donat film festival.
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