5.8/10
438
17 user 7 critic

She Couldn't Say No (1954)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama | 15 February 1954 (USA)
A wealthy heiress returns to a small Arkansas town to furtively reward the townsfolk who helped to save her life when she was a young girl.

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(screenplay) (as D. D. Beauchamp), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Doctor Robert Sellers
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Corby Lane
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Odie Chalmers
...
Ed Meeker
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Joe Wheelen
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Judge Hobart
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Digger
Ralph Dumke ...
Sheriff
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Miss McMurtry
Gus Schilling ...
Ed Gruman
...
Sally Watson
Pinky Tomlin ...
Elmer Wooley
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Storyline

As usual with most of the RKO films from this era "presented" by RKO-owner Howard Hughes, the PCA number is usually 500-1000 digits lower than the one from other studios being released at the time, indicating it was released a year or more after it was completed. This one finds heiress Corby Lane (Jean Simmons) coming to a small Arkansas town to play Santa Claus because, when she was a small child traveling with her impoverished father, the townspeople saved her life by donating money needed for medical treatment. She meets and falls in love with "Doc" Sellers (Robert Mitchum), an easy-going doctor who enjoys fishing and the unhurried pace of the town. Corby's gesture of handing out money and lavish gifts to the citizens backfires when, after it has been publicized, the town becomes the destination of every wayward traveler and fortune seeker. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Plot Keywords:

fishing | heiress | gift | doctor | diaper | See All (29) »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 February 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

She Had to Say Yes  »

Filming Locations:


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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Arthur Hunnicutt, who plays Odie, really was a native of Arkansas. See more »

Goofs

If a person honked her car horn as often as Simmons did, she'd be arrested for disturbing the peace. In addition, she abused the medical-alert horn for frivolous reasons, another misdemeanour. See more »

Quotes

Odie Chalmers: As sheriff of this county, I arrest you on three counts: count o' you parked your car in the bus space; count of assault and battery and count of you ain't no account
See more »

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User Reviews

Star chemistry wins through
17 September 2004 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

This was the hundredth and last of Lloyd Bacon's features (in 28 years!) and it's way down from his career summit, 1934's "42nd Street".

Set in Progress, Ark. (pop. 200), "She Couldn't Say No" concerns a revenant from childhood, heiress Jean Simmons. She learns that spraying her cash around anonymously causes more chaos than gratitude; but she finds love with local doctor and sage Mitchum, watched quizzically by assorted cornpone and cracker-barrel types.

There are few intimations of modernity. TV crews cover the mob hysteria when Ms Simmons's dollar-stuffed envelopes arrive in the citizens' mailboxes. Mitchum contemplates spending his bounty on "one of those bomb shelters". By and large, though, it's timeless, escapist hick hokum. The sun shines, no-one works too hard and the only blacks are a couple of goggling delivery men.

Having deprecated Audrey Hepburn in my comment on "Breakfast at Tiffany's", let me commend Jean Simmons as a British gamine with a wider range and a lot less self-satisfaction. She was suing to get out from under Howard Hughes's bizarre sway at RKO when "She Couldn't Say No" was shot (it was backburnered, like so many Hughes projects, while the boss dithered) and within five years she would do her best work in "Elmer Gantry" and "Spartacus". As usual in Simmons's earlier American movies, the script has to account for her English voice, and there's a clumsy bit of fishing slapstick to prove she isn't a stuck-up Limey; but her spirited sparring with Doctor Robert, her coolly measured tones (no hint of screech or shout) and smouldering sexiness win through.

Mitchum, limbering up for "Night of the Hunter", is his superbly somnolent, reflective yet dynamically masculine and mature self: this quiet man could make John Wayne look noisily neurotic. The couple, who had clicked in "Angel Face", keep the mild, pleasant and not too preachy romcom fresher than most from the McCarthyised, nuke-haunted Hollywood of the early Fifties, when America needed more laughs than it got at the cinema.


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