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A soldier stationed on an army base and his fiancé, who runs a women's "fat farm" nearby, want to get married but don't have enough money. Three customers of the "fat farm" scheme to get back at their philandering husbands by hiring the soldier and two of his buddies as "escorts" for the weekend. Complications ensue when the husbands show up unexpectedly. Written by
A little research will yield some interesting results sometimes. Let's Face It was originally a very risqué comedy from the Roaring Twenties entitled Cradle Snatchers. It was written by Norma Mitchell and Russell Medcraft and produced on Broadway by Sam Harris and ran 332 performances in 1925. It concerned some college kids working as gigolos who some married women pick up after their husbands take one too many trips out of town for some frolicking of their own. Two of the married women were Mary Boland and Edna May Oliver and one of the college kids was Humphrey Bogart. I would love to have seen this play.
By the way it should be remembered at this time Bogart was playing young juveniles on Broadway and it was he who uttered the line "tennis anyone" for the first time. Maybe it was here.
Fast forward to 1941 and Cole Porter sees the possibilities of this play as a book for one of his musicals. It certainly has the plot elements for his double entendre lyrics. The book was updated to have the gigolos be recent army draftees from a nearby camp and it starred Danny Kaye and Eve Arden.
But as what happens in all of Cole Porter's work it gets watered down so it's a passably good comedy now for Bob Hope. Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn write extra material suited to Betty Hutton. Eve Arden repeats her role as one of the man hungry women. Betty Hutton is in this as the proprietor of a fat farm where three husbands led by Raymond Walburn dump their wives so they can frolic.
Only this time Arden and her chums decide to do some frolicking on their own as in the original play. Who do they pick but Bob Hope and two of his fellow draftees. Hope incidentally is going out with Betty Hutton and she catches wind of the scheme. I think you can figure the rest out.
Cole Porter's score was totally emasculated for the screen version. Some additional numbers were written for Betty Hutton, I don't think Porter exactly wrote her type of material. And of course it even has a Nazi submarine in the plot. That you have to see to believe.
Hope and Hutton do click very well, it's a pity they didn't get to work together again on material that was constructed for them as opposed to something watered down. I imagine you could sure make a film of Cradle Snatchers now without the censor.
But imagine, a story done by Humphrey Bogart, Danny Kaye, and Bob Hope. Great piece of trivia at your next tournament.
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