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The First Time (1952)

 -  Comedy  -  31 January 1952 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 88 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 3 critic

Expectant parents Joe and Betsy Bennett anxiously await the arrival of their new baby. Then after the baby arrives, they discover the unpleasant side of parenting: sleepless nights, extra ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (story), 2 more credits »
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Title: The First Time (1952)

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Credited cast:
Joe Bennet
Betsey Bennet
Bill Goodwin ...
Mel Gilbert
Jeff Donnell ...
Donna Gilbert
Carl Benton Reid ...
Andrew Bennet
Mona Barrie ...
Cassie Mayhew
Kathleen Comegys ...
Florence Bennet
Paul Harvey ...
Cora Witherspoon ...
Nurse Salisbury
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Diana Dawson ...
Bit Role
Stuffy Singer ...
As the baby - he narrated the movie (voice)


Expectant parents Joe and Betsy Bennett anxiously await the arrival of their new baby. Then after the baby arrives, they discover the unpleasant side of parenting: sleepless nights, extra bills and no more free time. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


She's going to have a baby ... and the heir is too apparent!




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Release Date:

31 January 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Small Wonder  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Larry Parks was originally slated for the male lead until he was blacklisted following his testimony before the House Unamerican Activities Committee, during which he admitted to having once been a member of the Communist Party but declined to name names. See more »

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User Reviews

Possibly the funniest movie that NOBODY has apparently ever seen
7 September 2002 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

A hilarious, original, and beautiful domestic comedy. The plot is pretty bare-bones: a married couple has a baby, and we spend the first year following their good times and hardships. They live the 1950s ideal marriage, or at least that's how they'd like to appear. Joe, the husband (Robert Cummings), is forced to quit his great but low-paying job as an architect when they can't afford a professional nanny to help his wife, Betsey (Barbara Hale), learn exactly how to take care of their son. Instead, he has to beg his father for a thankless job as a door-to-door washing machine salesman (and to boot the washing machines are crap!). Joe's work is hellish, and it puts a strain on his relationship with Betsey. When he gets home from work, he wants to expect what every respectable 1950s husband has: a hot meal and a pretty wife who's prepared it. He doesn't get what he wants, of course, and, after a big fight, Betsey gets back at him by wearing a sexy negligée, preparing his hot dinner perfectly, pouring him a tall glass of beer, and stuffing his pipe full. Sounds good, but she fills his beer glass too full, throws him down onto the couch (without spilling his beer, amazingly), overstuffs his pipe, and gives him dinner on a silver platter, setting it on his knees as he lays on the couch, his hand busy guarding his beer. When she devilishly asks him if this is how he'd like it, his mouth full of pipe stem, he nods giddily. He's too oblivious to realize that she's being sarcastic, and only realizes what she was doing when she runs away crying. Every aspect of the film is masterfully written and directed. It's worthy of Preston Sturges, the equal of many of his films. And like Sturges' films, it manages to be both hilarious and emotionally touching. The film is narrated by their son from an unspecified later date, which is quite cute. When I came to IMDb to rate it and comment on it, I was utterly shocked to see that it had not even received five votes. This is easily the best film that I've seen with that sorry distinction. 10/10.

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