J.B. Ball, a rich financier, gets fed up with his free-spending family. He takes his wife's just-bought (very expensive) sable coat and throws it out the window, it lands on poor ... See full summary »
Bob Hope is being stalked by a predatory widow who is a widow of wealthy husbands many times over. Martha Raye is a Texan heiress who wants to marry her boyfriend Andy Devine, but her ... See full summary »
Dudley Moore plays a composer who suspects his wife of cheating. He plots to kill her and frame it on her lover. The whole movie sort of compares his expectations of a perfect result to reality. In the end nothing turns out as planned.
A man's life is retold just after his funeral. Beginning as a track walker, Tom Garner rose through all sorts of railroad jobs to head the company. In the meantime he lost touch with his ... See full summary »
In the winter of 1868, Eben Frost goes to a Boston pawnshop and redeems a silver medal, inscribed to "Dr. W.T.G. Morton, the Benefactor of Mankind, with the Gratitude of Humanity." Frost drives to a country farmhouse and gives the medal to Morton's widow, Elizabeth Morton who explains to her daughter, Betty, that Frost was the first person given anesthesia by her father, Boston dentist Dr. W.T.G. Morton. The story flashes back 20 years to find Morton being wildly acclaimed by medical students as the man whose discovery of "letheon" had forever ended pain as, before that day, even amputations were performed with the patient fully conscious. "Letheron", unknown to everybody but Morton and Elizabeth, is simply highly rectified sulfuric ether - cleaning fluid - easily obtainable at a pharmacy. By keeping the secret, Dr. Morton could be rich, but he had rather be poor than see a girl strapped to an operating table under the knife of Dr. Warren, and he reveals his secret to a group of ... Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
I can't add much to wmorrow59's excellent summary. It caught the strengths and weaknesses of this film and provided excellent historical background. Be sure to read it.
This film is only worth watching if you're a Preston Sturges fanatic (like me) and are willing to sit through his one failure as well as his many triumphs. I have a hunch that the studio meddling accounts for much of the trouble -- the movie's pace and structure are erratic at best -- but I also fear that our man Preston may have wandered too far from his natural path as a filmmaker. This is no buried treasure. Sturges's cut may have been an improvement, but I don't see the makings of a good movie here. The dialogue is weird when it isn't plain awful, the protagonist is a pigheaded dimwit, and the moments of slapstick are wildly misplaced.
If you buy Turner's incredible 7-film Sturges box set, do so for the other six titles -- all of them masterpieces.
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