Director Billy Wilder salutes his idol, Ernst Lubitsch, with this comedy about a middle-aged playboy fascinated by the daughter of a private detective who has been hired to entrap him with the wife of a client.
New York working girl Susan Applegate is desperate to go home to Iowa but does not have the railway fare so she disguises herself as a child to ride half fare. Enroute she meets Philip Kirby, an Army major teaching at a military school. Written by
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As a neophyte director, Billy Wilder heavily relied on editor Doane Harrison for guidance. Harrison had edited Hold Back the Dawn (1941), which Charles Brackett and Wilder had written. Unusually for an editor, Harrison was on the set for filming as well as working in the cutting room. Wilder later said, "I worked with a very good cutter, Doane Harrison, from whom I learned a great deal. He was much more of a help to me than the cameraman. When I became a director from a writer my technical knowledge was very meagre." Harrison taught him how to "cut in the camera," a form of spontaneous editing that results in a minimal amount of film being shot and eliminates the possibility of studio heads later adding footage the director deemed unnecessary. In later years, Wilder commented, "When I finish a film, there is nothing on the cutting room floor but chewing gum wrappers and tears." Wilder's and Harrison's unusually close and important collaboration continued for every subsequent film directed by Wilder through The Fortune Cookie (1966). See more »
When Pamela drives up to the stopped train, from inside the train her paneled wagon looks clean but from outside it is muddy. See more »
Billy Wilder's directorial debut is one of the American cinema's classic screwball comedies. Ginger Rogers is electric as the blue-collar gal whose adventures begin when she dresses herself up as a youngster so she can afford to ride home on the train (she only has half-fare). Robert Benchley heads a magnificent supporting cast, and Ray Milland acts his role to a "tee." If you've never seen this, you are in for a treat.
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