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The Mating Season (1951)

 -  Comedy  -  12 January 1951 (USA)
7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 1,002 users  
Reviews: 27 user | 6 critic

Ellen McNulty leaves her New Jersey hamburger stand and heads west to pay a surprise visit to her son and his new bride. When Ellen arrives, her daughter-in-law mistakes her for the maid ... See full summary »

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(written for the screen by), (written for the screen by), 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Maggie Carleton
...
...
...
...
...
Mr. Kalinger, Sr.
James Lorimer ...
George C. Kalinger, Jr.
Gladys Hurlbut ...
Mrs. Conger
Cora Witherspoon ...
Mrs. Williamson
Malcolm Keen ...
Mr. Williamson
...
Annie
...
Mugsy
Mary Young ...
Spinster
Samuel Colt ...
Colonel Conger
Grayce Hampton ...
Mrs. Fahnstock
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Storyline

Ellen McNulty leaves her New Jersey hamburger stand and heads west to pay a surprise visit to her son and his new bride. When Ellen arrives, her daughter-in-law mistakes her for the maid she has hired for a big party they are throwing. Rather than cause any embarrassment, Ellen goes along with the charade, which leads to many complications. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

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Release Date:

12 January 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Relative Stranger  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although playing his mother in this film, Thelma Ritter was only 6 years older than 'John Lund'. See more »

Quotes

Val McNulty: Junior Kalinger? Oh, he's OK.
Ellen McNulty: Oh, go on, I've stepped on better things.
See more »

Soundtracks

The Mating Season
(uncredited)
Music by Jay Livingston
Lyrics by Ray Evans
sung by chorus over main titles
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A real charmer
4 February 2007 | by (NY, NY) – See all my reviews

Mitchell Leisen directed three wonderful movies, one very good one, may fine ones, and some that weren't successful. No matter what one thinks of the hauteur theory, he was a fine stylist and that's not a bad track record.

The three beauties include this one. Also there are "Midnight," one of the most glamorous and charming of all screwball comedies, and "Easy Living." That may have been Jean Arthur at her very best (and most lovable.) (The very good one, in my view, is "Death Takes A Holiday.") Thelma Ritter carries this one. So, as she might say with a flip of a dust rag, "what else is new?" Indeed, she is one of the treasures of American movie history.

Here she is the mother of John Lund, who is not very appealing. She's as blue collar as blue collar can be. Lund has fallen for and married Gene Tierney. Her mother is played very stylishly by Miriam Hopkins. Well, which one would you want as a mother? Or a mother-in-law? Thing is, Thelma is mistaken for a maid when she arrives the day of Lund and Tierney's wedding and carries on this charade for most of the movie. It's sad, really. That part is rarely played for laughs and it is indeed far more poignant than funny.

Larry Keating is good as Lund's ultimate boss. The actor playing his son is a cipher and looks almost Keating's age.

But this is Ritter's movie. Does she steal scenes? Not discernibly, though I've heard her accused of doing that in other films. She steals the picture. And our hearts.


13 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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