Jimmy and Sheila Broadbent (Rex Harrison and Kay Kendall), welcome to London Jimmy's 17-year-old daughter, Jane (Sandra Dee). Jane is from Jimmy's first marriage to an American and has come to visit her father and the step-mother she has never met. While visiting Sheila has the idea of making Jane a debutante, an idea Jane resists. Difficulties range from Jane's apathy to being placed on the marriage block, the determined efforts of Sheila's cousin, Mabel Claremont, (Angela Lansbury) to win wealthy David Fenner (Peter Myers) for her debutante daughter Clarissa (Diane Clare), and Jane's attraction to David Parkson (John Saxon), an American drummer who plays in the orchestra at the coming-out balls. Written by
What! David Fenner? Let me speak to him again. David, this is Sheila. About your mother, darling...
Well, I'm afraid she's dead, actually.
Yes, I know, darling, that's why I'm so sorry about asking you to give her my love.
I'm afraid I can't, because she's dead.
I know, darling, that's why I'm so sorry. It was such a silly mistake to make.
Well, she couldn't help it, actually.
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Entrancing comedy driven by the captivating team of Rex Harrison and the divine Kay Kendall. Both masters of comic timing they make the slight plot of unexpectedly having to present Sandra Dee, Rex's very American daughter, into British high society highly entertaining. Hard to believe that Kay was dying of leukemia while this was being made and would only complete one more picture before her premature death at 33 the next year. She looks sensational, vibrant and full of life, and gowned and jeweled in an amazing array of stunning fashions. Rex is terrific, he often came across as a pompous ass on screen, which worked perfectly for My Fair Lady but otherwise could be off putting, but here he is bemused and full of wry detachment.
The supporting cast is sprinkled with funny performances. Sandra Dee is pert, sweet and amusingly frustrated as the object of Kay's misguided good will and John Saxon is darkly handsome and quite engaging. The two became good friends during the filming of this and remained so for the rest of Sandra's life. He was one of the few people she would see after she became a recluse.
Angela Lansbury is delightful as the loquacious flibbertigibbet cousin of Kay reminding those who only know her from Murder, She Wrote that she is an expert comedienne as well. The entire cast is wonderful but it is really Kay Kendall's movie all the way.
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