First, Charles Coburn looks awful in a full beard. Second, the movie is predicated on a premise that doesn't hold up: If a famous writer were to come to the US from England, why would he be concerned about having a good cook? He would be dining out with his hosts and hostesses every night! The character Coburn plays is an unfunny variation on Sheridan Whiteside. Did the man who came to dinner fuss over whether he had his own cook? No, of course not: He had the people with whom he was holed up provide his meals and cater to his every whim.
The movie has some charming female character actresses. Marguerite Chapman is appealing as the Coburn character's daughter, too. But the ex-solider she falls for lacks charm in spades. Additionally, the two have zero chemistry.
It's wonderful seeing little-known movies from Columbia again. But I can't be gracious and pretend that every one of them is a lost treasure.
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