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William A. Wellman
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
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 »
This was a quirky but interesting film about a free footloose sort of fellow played by Joel McCrea who lives in the north Michigan woods and who has an ambition to get an outboard motor for his rowboat. He earns a most comfortable living digging for clams in the lake, but if he had a motor he could range far in the lake and get even more clams and make more money. Who knows, he might even find a pearl.
When a passing truckdriver tells him that he can make a ton of money working in Detroit in one of the automobile plants and get his outboard motor quick enough, McCrea goes to Detroit to get a job. He gets more than a job, he gets a wife in lunch counter girl Ellen Drew, a sidekick in Eddie Bracken and his outboard motor which he carries lovingly like a newborn.
Of course when a real newborn comes along and responsibilities do add up, Drew is not so intrigued by her husband's dream of living on the lake and digging clams. That's when the crisis comes to a head.
Watching this film I thought this might have been a property that Paramount had in mind for Bing Crosby. I could see where a few musical numbers could have been dropped in. In the Tony Thomas book on The Films Of Joel McCrea, it was mentioned that McCrea's fans wanted to see some action and he has one humdinger of a fight with heavy industrial machinery with rival Albert Dekker. I agree that the sequence was probably put in the film for McCrea and his fans.
Reaching For The Sun is not one of McCrea or director William Wellman's best or best known. But it's good entertainment and fans of these two will enjoy rediscovering this film.
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