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Carl Benton Reid
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Larry and Kitty are two middle-class suburbanites who find themselves growing bored with their lives and respective marriages. Although each always found the other grating in manner, they find themselves falling in love when thrown together without their spouses on a vacation. After returning home, they try to break things off, but always seem to grow closer. A holiday together will finally settle whether they should end their marriages. Written by
The injury to Lucille Ball was not the only problem to afflict the picture. Don DeFore injured his back, requiring hospitalization, and director Melvin Frank broke his ankle playing golf and had to hobble around on crutches. The film's publicist came down with a two-week case of the mumps, Bob Hope smashed his finger, and even the delivery man from Lucy's pharmacy fell into the same tank that the star had. To top things off, a few days after Lucy referred to her Desilu soundstage as a "firetrap," it partially burned down. See more »
When Kitty and Larry are eating in a restaurant in Pasadena, a waitress comes to their table. A few weeks later when they are at a restaurant in Monterey, the same waitress in the same uniform is their server. See more »
A good object lesson for couples...but not necessarily a comedy.
I have seen a bunch of Bob Hope films, though few from the later part of his movie career. This is because all the Hope films from the 60s that I have seen (especially "Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number") have been disappointments. Despite this, I decided to try "The Facts of Life"...and was very much surprised. The big surprise is that the film really wasn't a comedy!!
Larry (Hope) and Kitty (Lucille Ball) both hang in the same social circle but are hardly friends. She thinks he's a bit of a blowhard. Despite this, neither one realizes that they DO have something in common...inattentive spouses who take them for granted. This becomes obvious when these couples are headed to Mexico for a grand vacation. This is because Kitty and Larry's spouses both have something seemingly better to do and instruct their partners to go without them. In essence Larry and Kitty are pushed together and nature takes its course...and they slowly find themselves falling in love.
Well, this made for a lovely vacation for the two but they both realize that it just cannot be and plan on returning home to their old dull lives. The problem is that when they return home, their spouses continue to find lots of things which are more important than nurturing them. So, the pair decide to pick up where they left off...though complications naturally ensue.
If this doesn't sound like a comedy, well, it really isn't...at least the first half of the film. There are a few mildly funny bits here and there but it's obvious these folks weren't trying to make a comedy but more a romantic drama about marriage and straying spouses. However, when the pair finally get off together once again, the romance becomes far less romantic and the emphasis is on laughs AND reality...the reality that it was just a vacation infatuation after all and an affair ain't so easy after all.
In many ways, this film would be great for couples to watch...particularly folks who have been together for many years. It's a great object lesson about what NOT to do in your marriage as well as to encourage you to keep that love alive.
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