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Max Wharton, 39, is the editor of the New York Bulletin -- or he was, until he announces that he's quitting to join the army. Robert Gow, who owns the paper, is furious. But Wharton wants more than anything to be close to the war. And his wife, Polly, wants to be close to him. And so she finishes up her latest movie script, and follows her husband to live near the barracks. She lives in a bungalow with no shower, lights that you have to turn on and off from the outside, a refrigerator that makes a hideous noise when she's lucky (that means it's working), moths and other niceties. Meanwhile, Max, studying hard for his exams, is starting to believe the saw that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. Written by
When Polly (Irene Dunne) is writing columns for Max (Alexander Knox) while he's busy attending classes and studying, one of the columns has a typo in the title - "Victory is What You You Make It." See more »
I first saw this movie in the 1960's on TV. I subsequently saw it a couple of more times in the next few years but have not seen it since the late 1960's. I don't believe there are any existing copies of it, but I may be wrong. I found the movie, as I recall it, pleasant and amusing. As you can tell, it made an impression on me.
This film is about the editor (Alexander Knox) of a New York newspaper who, already an older individual, gets called near the end of World War II, into the U.S. Army's Officer Candidate School and the difficulties he goes through to meet the standards in order to become an officer. He agreed at his publisher's (Charles Coburn) urging to continue with editorial writing. Because he becomes burden with trying to pass the classes at OCS he becomes, he can't devote time to effort to writing the weekly editorials as he promised. His wife (Irene Dunne), who lives with him while he attends OCS, starts writing the editorials but passes them off to the publisher as his (Knox's character does not know that she keeps writing the editorials after he stops).
What impressed me about this movie was a speech Knox's character gives at the graduating class commencement in OCS toward the end of the movie. It is called "The World and Apple Pie" and speaks about the need for America to remain active in world affairs after World War II ends (in view of America's isolationism prior to World War II). He makes the analogy between the ingredients and person that make a apple pie and the ingredients that and people that make a peaceful world, that the pie and the world are only as good as the ingredients and the people who made them.
If there is an extant copy of the movie with the speech in it, I would love to find it. If you do have a chance to see the movie, do so. It's not a great movie but the speech, I think, will make its mark.
I did come across a book, a few years back, containing Ruth Gordon's play upon which the movie was based but the play did not have the speech in it.
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