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|Index||15 reviews in total|
A very funny, romantic movie. I enjoyed all the little creative pieces of
"business" and lines such as "...you rang my gong." I enjoyed the treat of
Sidney Toler as Keough.
I enjoyed the beautiful, wonderful cars of the 1930s, and the background scenes of beautiful, wonderful downtown Los Angeles of the '30s and into the 1950s. I was born there in 1934 and remember it well when it was a beautiful place to live. Ah, nostalgia!! This is what it really did look like then.
"Double Wedding" is an enjoyable, albeit dizzying comedy starring
William Powell and Myrna Loy. It's really a tribute to the cast that
they were able to carry on in such a wacky movie despite being shut
down for a time due to Jean Harlow's untimely death. Both Powell, who
was involved with Harlow, and Loy, who was a friend of hers, took her
death very hard.
Powell and Loy play polar opposites in this film. She is a complete control freak who has her life, her sister's life, and the life of her sister's fiancé, planned down to the millisecond. Along comes Powell, who lives in a trailer and hocks items when he needs money. Once he's in their lives, all bets are off, and chaos reigns supreme.
The cast is great but the whole thing kind of veers off focus from time to time. The writing isn't as strong as in some of the other screwball comedies of the era. But Powell is a treasure and teamed with Loy, even more so.
Watching this movie was like looking through a beautiful, whimsical kaleidoscope. So many facets are perfect: Loy at her peak of gorgeous, wry sophistication; the Deco sets; Powell's gentle irony; the relationships of various characters and the consistency of dialog; even the physical pranks were great--and I don't like slapstick all that much! This film reminded me of Shop Around the Corner. It wasn't as good, that's a tall order, but there was something bigger going on in this movie than just the usual romantic farce. I have to admire the writer's and director's ability to pull off a romantic comedy between two such diametrically opposed people. The heroine is the quintessential control freak; the hero, as laid back and tolerant as a hippie of the sixties. No one apologizes for their quirks, which is refreshing, and neither of them had to change all that much to make the ending work. And as far as acting goes, Loy and Powell don't hold back any punches (literally!) whenever the two characters collide. It is amazing to watch them knowing how they were reacting to Harlow's death during shooting. I love finding old movies, and this one is buried treasure.
I have always found this movie more than a little strained and Powell and Loy not up to their usual shine. In fact, Myrna Loy's character seems downright unpleasant!! Much of this may have to do with the death of Powell's fiancee Jean Harlow during production. Myrna Loy, in her autobiography, states that she cannot bear to watch this movie because of the pain they all felt while making it. While the two do their professional best (and the uninformed would never guess that real tragedy was plaguing them) you are much better off watching Powell and Loy in one of their better works...ie The Thin Man Series, Libeled Lady,I Love You Again, etc. FYI: Powell developed colon cancer in the year following Harlow's tragic death and nearly died himself. He recovered and returned to active film work with 1939's Another Thin Man and proceeded to beat the odds and live another 40 years!!!
A screwball romantic comedy...but somebody forgot to tighten the screws. Confusion reigns after a ne'er-do-well man becomes involved with both a would-be actress and her domineering, humorless sister. Funny cast (including the "Thin Man" couple, Myrna Loy and William Powell) have a high time with their eccentric characters and fast, witty dialogue, but the plot is extremely thin, taking everyone around in circles. Too bad this didn't have firmer handling, the potential was here for a comedy classic. Loy's continuous bad temper gets the biggest laughs, however the wild slapstick climax boasts some very amusing sight-gags. **1/2 from ****
Considering that this film stars William Powell and Myrna Loy, it's
definitely worth seeing--as are all of their films together. Even their
lesser films together are wonderful and worth seeing--so it's a natural
that I watched "Double Wedding".
In this film, Powell plays the ultimate bohemian and Loy plays a lady who is incredibly controlling and anti-fun. The idea of these two getting together is pretty far-fetched! But, because this is a Hollywood film, you know that eventually the two will find love. However, how they get there and how much fun the film becomes is exactly why you should see the film.
It all begins with Powell teaching a young couple to act and they are discussing his latest screenplay. The three are fast friends and have fun planning on making a film together. HOWEVER, when the very controlling sister (Loy) finds out about this, she assumes the worst and demands Powell stop seeing her sister and her fiancé. Mostly this is because Powell isn't in her plan for the two--as Loy has decided the two will marry, where they will go on their honeymoon, etc.--and the two idiots allow this! Little does this compulsive planner and controller know that Powell has plans for her! Overall, this is yet another fun pairing of Powell and Loy. While the film is silly and contrived, it's also very entertaining and clever. The ending was insanely chaotic--like a Marx Brothers film--and a lot of fun.
Double Wedding is a wonderful comedy loaded with great dialogue and wit. This was just one of the 14 movies Powell and Loy teamed up for. It was during the filming of this movie that Powell's fiancee Jean Harlow died. Filming was halted for six weeks and Powell returned to finish the movie. He then went to Europe for a year before teaming with Loy again in 37 for another Thin Man movie.
Powell is an artist, a free spirit who disrupts the well-made plans of Loy, who controls the lives of her kid sister (Rice) and the latter's fiancé with an iron fist. Like the dozen other teamings of Powell and Loy, it is fun to watch the two pros match wits. Beal is funny as Rice's milquetoast fiancé, whom Powell tries to make a man out of. Powell is an aspiring writer/director who coaches Beal and Rice in acting out a love story; unable to arouse passion out of Beal, Powell demonstrates by passionately kissing the lovely Rice, who falls in love with him. Of course, Powell falls in love with Rice's sister, Loy, setting the stage for comic situations.
Myrna Loy plays a control freak who micromanages everything. She even
picks out her sister's fiancé (John Beal) and plans their wedding and
honeymoon. But her sister (Florence Rice) decides she doesn't want to
marry the guy Loy picked. She wants to marry bohemian William Powell.
Powell, however, starts to fall for Loy. In order to be with her he
must help Rice and Beal get back together.
Powell and Loy are great as usual. John Beal is wonderful as the milquetoast Waldo. Sidney Toler has a funny part as Loy's butler who claims he was a G-man before there was such a thing. Any Powell/Loy movie is worth seeing. This isn't their best but it's a good one.
Double Wedding finds Myrna Loy as a Katharine Hepburn/Rosalind Russell
type career woman who is dominating all. We wouldn't see the like of it
until Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada on the screen. But I doubt
that Streep would have fallen for a free spirit like William Powell.
Nor would sister Florence Rice.
The problem is that Florence lives with Myrna who dictates her whole life to her including her choice of husband and in this case it's the original milquetoast John Beal. Beal himself gets a few laughs in a role that Harold Lloyd would have been ideal had that part been the central character.
Out of rebellion Rice starts hanging around and falling for Powell who lives in a trailer parked in a vacant lot next to Edgar Kennedy's bar. Powell is not the marrying kind at first and definitely not for Rice, but Beal is such an incredible drip. And Loy won't have him, at least for a brother-in-law. But who knows for what else.
This role for Powell was quite a departure, usually he's a gentleman dressed to the nines. Still even as a Bohemian free spirited artist he's the height of graciousness and good manners and actually makes it work.
I could never see Loy living in a trailer, much less a trailer park. She'll have to have Powell move in with her and dress him up a bit.
Double Wedding which was being shot while Jean Harlow was shooting Saratoga and dying a little every day on that set cast a pall on this picture. The Powell/Loy timing seemed a bit off, certainly Powell was doing his own grieving in quiet moments for the woman he planned to marry.
It's not the best of their team features, but Bill and Myrna's fans should have no cause for complaint.
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