Astronomer Bill Whitley is so preoccupied with the new comet he's discovered that his time at the observatory sometimes comes at the expense of his beautiful wife, Vicky. When the neglected spouse becomes influenced by an eccentric neighbor into believing in the power of astrology, she subscribes to a weekly horoscope from a phony seer, the appropriately named Margaret Sybill. When the beautiful Mrs. Whitley reads that a new dream man will be coming soon into her life, she assumes he's taken the form of Lloyd Hunter, a handsome and dashing foreign correspondent who doubles as the neighborhood air raid warden. A frantic Bill realizes that he's going to have to keep closer track of his earthbound heavenly body if he's going to keep the prediction from becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. Written by
[Talking on the phone]
Well, I'm new here. Mrs. whitley hired me at 8;00 and left at 8:15. Her husband? Well, there's a gentleman down here who won't wake up. If he's what you want, you better come and wake him yourself!
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Hedy Lamarr's astonishing beauty is the only redeeming element of this dated, trivial comedy...
After making CROSSROADS, a clever mystery set in 1930s Paris, at MGM in 1942, William Powell and Hedy Lamarr were brought together again in 1944 to star in an MGM comedy called THE HEAVENLY BODY. Although they played husband and wife on-screen again, the results are less than satisfactory due to the dull and predictable script.
Of course, Hedy Lamarr is incredibly beautiful herefor example, she wears a white negligee that translucently outlines her well-endowed assets in one scenebut she's off-screen for almost half the film. She portrays the happily married Paris-born wife of an astronomer (William Powell) who seeks guidance from the local astrologist (Fay Bainter) and eventually falls for a handsome air raid warden (James Craig). Predictable comic situations ensue when a jealous Powell tries everything in his power to bring his wife back to him. The dependable Spring Byington, who is usually amusing in her other films, is irritating as an eccentric next-door neighbor who motivates Hedy to take up astrology.
Powell handles the comedy well, but Hedy's acting, as opposed to her naturalistic acting in better films like COME LIVE WITH ME (1941) and CROSSROADS, seems artificial and her performance doesn't really come across well here. Perhaps the script was to blame, containing dated and unfunny World War II jokes about rationing and air raid wardens. However, the film has the usual lush MGM production values and fine black-and-white cinematography (by Robert Planck). Special mention should go to the use of Brahms' "Hungarian Dance No.1 in G Major", which Hedy listens to in a concert hall scene.
Unless you want to see a stunning Hedy in a somewhat revealing negligee and hear William and Hedy yodel and sing a bit with the accompaniment of an acoustic guitar, don't waste your time with this boring, trite film. If you want to see William and Hedy together in a slightly better film, I recommend CROSSROADS.
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