6.5/10
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27 user 16 critic

Too Many Husbands (1940)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance | 21 March 1940 (USA)
Long-missing Bill Cardew returns to find his wife Vicky remarried...and in no hurry to settle for just one husband.

Director:

Wesley Ruggles

Writers:

Claude Binyon (screen play), W. Somerset Maugham (based upon the play by)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jean Arthur ... Vicky Lowndes
Fred MacMurray ... Bill Cardew
Melvyn Douglas ... Henry Lowndes
Harry Davenport ... George
Dorothy Peterson ... Gertrude Houlihan
Melville Cooper ... Peter
Edgar Buchanan ... McDermott
Tom Dugan ... Sullivan
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Storyline

It's been a year since Bill Cardew was declared dead by drowning, and his widow Vicky is now married to his old friend and business partner, Henry Lowndes. When Bill unexpectedly returns from the island where he was marooned, what is Vicky to do? Well, having twice been a rather neglected wife, Vicky finds all the attention from two husbands competing for her favors delightful, and is in no hurry to make a decision...much to the discomfiture of hapless Bill and Henry. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HOW HAPPY SHE COULD BE WITH EITHER...IF THE OTHER WOULD JUST GO AWAY! (original Insert Card - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 March 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Wesley Ruggles' Too Many Husbands See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The play, "Too Many Husbands," opened in Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA on 4 August 1919 and moved to Broadway in New York City, New York, USA on 8 October 1919, closing in January 1920 after 102 performances. The opening night cast included Estelle Winwood as Vicky. It opened in London, England, UK on 30 August, 1919, with the title "Home and Beauty." See more »

Quotes

Henry Lowndes: Are you stupid enough to believe that I'd leave you here with my wife?
Bill Cardew: Your wife?
Henry Lowndes: Or anybody's wife?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Alchemist in Hollywood (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
Sung a bit by Fred MacMurray and hummed by Dave Willock
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Jean Arthur Is Worth Fighting For
25 August 2009 | by evanston_dadSee all my reviews

I wasn't expecting much from this Jean Arthur comedy vehicle, and as a result, I was pleasantly surprised by it.

Arthur plays a woman married to the best friend of her dead husband, who's mighty surprised when her dead husband turns out not to be so dead after all. Now she's got two men fighting over her, a state of affairs she settles back to enjoy, much to the dismay of her father, played by that terrific character actor Harry Davenport.

Jean Arthur is absolutely adorable, even if she is a bit of a brat in this. You want to hug her even as you want to see her kicked in the seat of her pants. Fred MacMurray plays the back from the dead husband, while Melvyn Douglas plays the best friend. I felt MacMurray straining a bit at the screwball comedy antics he was asked to tackle, but Douglas navigates the material expertly and probably gives the film's best performance.

I will say that the film is utterly unpredictable -- I could not guess how it was going to turn out right up until its closing credits.

Grade: B


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