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Critic's Choice (1963)

Approved | | Comedy | 13 April 1963 (USA)
3:21 | Trailer

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Parker Ballantine is a New York theater critic and his wife writes a play that may or may not be very good. Now Parker must either get out of reviewing the play or cause the breakup of his marriage.






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Cast overview, first billed only:
Charlotte Orr aka Charlie
S.P. Champlain
Dr. William Von Hagedorn
Ricky Kelman ...
Dorothy Green ...
Mrs. Margaret Champlain
Sally Orr
Joseph Gallison ...
Philip 'Phil' Yardley (as Evan McCord)
Marge Orr
Harvey Rittenhouse
Joe Rosenfield
Donald Losby ...
Geoffrey Von Hagedorn


Parker Ballantine is the most respected and forthright of the New York theater critics. Most of his closest friends are part of the Broadway community, such as his ex-wife actress Ivy London and producer S.P. Champlain. These friendships are not affected by bad reviews from Parker. Angie Ballantine is Parker's current devoted and faithful wife, who goes with him to show openings and even waits in the newsroom for him to write his reviews. Parker and Ivy's son, John Ballantine, lives with his father and Angie, who he loves. Angie has had problems in her life seeing projects through to completion, so Parker reacts with some skepticism when Angie announces she plans to write an autobiographical play about her growing up period. This project does become one that Angie does see through to completion, at least to a first draft stage, and despite Parker's disdainful reaction to at least the process, she is eager for his opinion on this draft. He complies. He hates it and tells her as such. ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Warner Bros. happily brings Broadway's 'choice' comedy to the screen! See more »




Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

13 April 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cuando el corazón manda  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Because of poor audience reaction at test screenings, this film sat unreleased for a year before being sent to theaters. The delay did not help, as it received generally unfavorable reviews. See more »


As the kitchen scene with Angela, Parker and John is ending there is a shot that has the stove top grill visible. There is a small but evident amount of smoke rising from it. Possibly a crew member's or Bob Hope's cigarette dropped in the grill between shots. See more »


John Ballantine: So, the trouble must be psychosomatic. Nonorganic, therefore psychically motivated.
Parker Ballantine: Will you stop talking like a child?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Ending: "The absolute End" See more »


References The Music Man (1962) See more »

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User Reviews

A Big Bore...
11 July 2012 | by See all my reviews

If you want to see Lucy at her least funny, watch this. She looks like she has a lot of personal strain, or something. Lucy never clicked in the movies for some reason, but on TV she soared. Bob Hope also struggles with the lame screenplay. You'll recognize many of the faces here, like Jim Backus and Rip Torn, among others. Apparently the play that this is based on got good reviews, but this movie version is so bad I'm surprised they didn't stop production and revamp it. On an up note, the movie is an indispensable time capsule. With JFK's assassination and the Beatles, this early 60's world would soon change forever. It's also worth seeing for the tiny Soupy Sales cameo.

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