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A normal day in the Wilkins family: reticent beauty Ruth, crusty judge father, petition-happy political activist teen Miriam. Who should show up but Ruth's soldier pen pal Bill Seacroft...whom she doesn't know about. It seems Miriam used her sister's name and picture to build up wartime morale. Ruth reluctantly agrees to "humor" Bill for his 2-day leave, though she's just become engaged to her stuffy suitor Albert. Can Miriam's cloud castle last the weekend without crashing to earth? Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
On Broadway Dear Ruth by Norman Krasna debuted on December 13, 1944 and ran for 680 performances until 1946. By the time it got to the silver screen there certainly were enough people in the audiences who got all the wartime references in the story though peace had been around for two years at that point.
John Dall and Virginia Gilmore starred on Broadway and in the film their roles were played by William Holden and Joan Caulfield. If there ever was a 'smiling Jim' role for Bill Holden as he liked to call the nice guy parts he was stuck typecast in the Forties this part in Dear Ruth is the quintessential. He even played this same part in a sequel entitled Dear Wife and virtually the same type part in Apartment For Peggy.
Caulfield is the eldest of two daughters of Edward Arnold and Mary Phillips. The youngest is a rebellious bobby soxer played by Mona Freeman. To do her bit for the morale Freeman wrote a letter to an unknown soldier Holden who was in the Army Air Corps. They become soul mates in the correspondence, but he encloses a picture of Caulfield and signs her name to it. Not pleasing to Caulfield and even less to her 4F co-worker Billy DeWolfe.
After that they see the earnest and idealistic Holden and the whole family just can't let him down when he surprises her with a 48 hour pass visit. She goes through with the masquerade, even DeWolfe reluctantly agrees.
The film is cute and has some laughs, but really if a woman had a chase between the Bills, Holden and DeWolfe who do you really think she would choose?
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