Professor Peter Boyd's engagement to the Dean's daughter is upset by the revelation that his father was a habitual convict. To prove the Dean's genetic theory of inherited traits as wrong, Boyd starts a 'secret' experiment. He borrows the science department's chimpanzee with the goal of showing that it is one's environment that affects your reaction to right and wrong. Written by
Richard Stephens <email@example.com>
Amusing monkey business is better than one might think...
RONALD REAGAN had his fair share of comedies during his stay at Warner Bros. as a contract player--but it wasn't until he went to Universal for BEDTIME FOR BONZO that he took so much kidding for appearing in what is actually an amusing comedy co-starring him with a chimp, especially after he became president. However, the film does have a good share of laughs and Reagan acquits himself in professional fashion.
What little plot there is hinges on Reagan's determination to raise Bonzo in a loving environment and prove that with nurturing and a sense of family, he can teach the chimp to respect rules and develop a moral sense of behavior. He and pretty Diana Lynn play the mama and papa roles with Diana gradually falling in love--and Reagan not realizing he's engaged to the wrong gal.
It's all very predictable but fun while it lasts, mainly because Bonzo gets to wreck havoc in a number of amusing scenes.
It's strictly for laughs and emerges as a harmless trifle in Reagan's career. Best segment is the last part of the film which has Bonzo robbing a jewelry store and then, because of his reformation by Reagan and Lynn, able to obey their command to return the necklace to the store which has everyone mystified as to how he accomplished it. It makes for a good finale--and so does the romantic happy ending.
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