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I Was a Male War Bride (1949)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, Romance, War  |  19 August 1949 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 5,557 users  
Reviews: 50 user | 33 critic

Captain Henri Rochard is a French officer assigned to work with Lieut. Catherine Gates. Through a wacky series of misadventures, they fall in love and marry. When the war ends, Capt. ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Marion Marshall ...
...
Bill Neff ...
Capt. Jack Ramsey (as William Neff)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
King Donovan ...
Undetermined Role (scenes deleted)
Charles B. Fitzsimons ...
Lt. Kelly (scenes deleted)
Robert Stevenson ...
Lieutenant (scenes deleted)
Otto Waldis ...
Undetermined Role (scenes deleted)
Edit

Storyline

Captain Henri Rochard is a French officer assigned to work with Lieut. Catherine Gates. Through a wacky series of misadventures, they fall in love and marry. When the war ends, Capt. Rochard tries to return to America with the other female war brides. Zany gender-confusing antics follow. Written by Thor Thapsigargin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...and this is how SHERIDAN TOOK GRANT! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

19 August 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Howard Hawks' I Was a Male War Bride  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Howard Hawks' first film to be shot in Europe, it was beset with problems. The German winter was unbearably cold and most of the cast and crew fell ill. Ann Sheridan caught pleurisy (which developed into pneumonia), Cary Grant contracted hepatitis with jaundice, and Hawks broke out in hives. See more »

Goofs

When Rochard and Gates pull up to drive onto a small river ferry, two large river barges/boats are tied up along the shore to their left. We can see some distance with houses and building. But when the ferry reaches the opposite shore we see behind them and there are no boats or building but an open rolling plain with patches of trees. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Catherine Gates: [Rochard is holding a baby for a stranger. His wife and Kitty walk up, both laughing] Ah, Henri, you look so maternal!
Lt. Kitty Lawrence: What is that?
Capt. Henri Rochard: A human fire extinguisher. You wanna try it?
Lt. Kitty Lawrence: Oh, come on.
[takes baby andfrowns at its prodigious wetness]
Lt. Catherine Gates: Aww, he's cute. What's his name?
Capt. Henri Rochard: Niagara.
Lt. Kitty Lawrence: [shaking hand dry] Henri, what a thing to do.
Lt. Catherine Gates: Where's the mother?
Capt. Henri Rochard: She went to get *more* water.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Tootsie (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

This Is the Army, Mr. Jones
(1943) (uncredited)
Written by Irving Berlin
Played during opening credits
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Grant and Sheridan Shine in Hawks Comedy
15 February 2009 | by (Alexandria, VA) – See all my reviews

Although the film shows hundreds of American female military personnel stationed in Germany after World War II, apparently few were interested in the local men. According to Howard Hawks's "I Was a Male War Bride," only the male soldiers wed Europeans, and the military bureaucracy and red tape were stacked against American women marrying European men. With that premise, an American Lieutenant, Ann Sheridan, falls for Frenchman Cary Grant, and the couple resort to extraordinary ploys to both comply with and circumvent the rules to marry and bring Grant to the U.S. as Sheridan's "bride." Although Grant is about as French as Big Ben and looks as feminine in drag as Sylvester Stallone, Cary is Cary and brings charm and charisma to his improbable role of Captain Henri Rochard. Tough and sexy Sheridan is better cast, but the sum of the two stars exceeds either apart. Cary and Ann have chemistry and work well together in a plot that could have easily fallen apart with a less skilled team of actors and director.

Grant plays the patient and suffering spouse, who must endlessly explain that he is married to an American soldier and entitled to shelter and transportation in a system that does not recognize his gender as compatible with his situation. Throughout, Grant's face and body language speak volumes about the frustration of dealing with bureaucracy and filling in forms in triplicate. Although at times Sheridan seems oblivious to the depth of Grant's problems, her performance is fine, and she convincingly captures the transition from an initial loathing of to an eventual attraction to Rochard. Shot on location in post-war Germany, the black-and-white photography captures the beauty of the countryside and the devastation of the cities with documentary like precision. Hawks keeps the proceedings well paced, and, while rarely laugh-out-loud funny, "I Was a Male War Bride" and its megawatt stars provide excellent entertainment.


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