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Caught in the Draft (1941)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance, War | 4 July 1941 (USA)
A movie star who can't stand loud noises accidentally joins the Army.


David Butler


Harry Tugend (original story), Harry Tugend (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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Complete credited cast:
Bob Hope ... Don Bolton
Dorothy Lamour ... Antoinette 'Tony' Fairbanks
Lynne Overman ... Steve Riggs
Eddie Bracken ... Bert Sparks
Clarence Kolb ... Col. Peter Fairbanks
Paul Hurst ... Sgt. Burns
Ferike Boros ... Yetta
Phyllis Ruth ... Margie
Irving Bacon ... Cogswell
Arthur Loft ... Movie director
Edgar Dearing ... Recruiting Sergeant
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Heinie Conklin ... Sign Hanger (scenes deleted)
Phyllis Kennedy ... Susan (scenes deleted)


Don Bolton is a movie star who can't stand loud noises. To evade the draft, he decides to get married...but falls for a colonel's daughter. By mistake, he and his two cronies enlist. In basic training, Don hopes to make a good impression on the fair Antoinette and her father, but his military career is largely slapstick. Will he ever get his corporal's stripes? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Comedy | Romance | War


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

4 July 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

El cabo raso See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. It was released on DVD 8 October 2002 in tandem with Give Me a Sailor (1938) as part of the Bob Hope Tribute Collection. See more »


Bert: I went out with a girl once that told me to go jump in the lake... When I got back, she was gone.
See more »


Referenced in Lights Fantastic (1942) See more »


Written by Louis Alter, lyrics Frank Loesser
Credited but used only as instrumental
See more »

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User Reviews

Bobby Hope vehicle to brighten the darkest of days.
30 May 2012 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Caught in the Draft is directed by David Butler and written by Wilkie C. Mahoney and Harry Tugend. It stars Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour, Lynne Overman, Eddie Bracken and Clarence Kolb. Music is by Victor Young and cinematography by Karl Struss.

It's an old saying, but comedy "is" very subjective, something that makes recommending or writing reviews about comedy films troublesome. Bob Hope movies are a mixed bunch, suffice to say that for every fan prepared to stand up and say that "such and such" is a great and funny Hope movie, another will say it's a lame effort. Caught in the Draft, to my Hope fan mind, is one of his best films. The "forces comedy" has many entries in the cinema drawer, from Bud and Lou to Martin & Lewis, and into the modern era with Stripes et al, it's a well farmed premise. Caught in the Draft, however, is up with the best of them.

Film finds Hope as Don Bolton, a movie star who is so cowardly he can't even stand loud noises. To dodge the draft, he plots to marry Dorothy Lamour's Antoinette 'Tony' Fairbanks, who happens to be a Colonel's daughter. But sure enough, Don and his two crony side-kicks enlist by mistake. Cue mishaps and chaos during basic training. Don's incentive is that if he by some miracle achieves the rank of Corporal, then the Colonel will let him stay on base and continue his relationship with Antoinette.

It was tailored as an ensemble piece, with Bracken etc slotted in alongside Hope as the big sell, but Hope, as his subsequent career bares out, didn't need help because he dominates the comedy and steals every scene he is in. And this in spite of Bracken, Overman and Kolb also doing fine work as well. The gag quota is high, visually and orally, a one liner or a brisk set piece is never far away, and Lamour continues to be the perfect lady foil for Hope's ebullient japery. Whether it's the cowardly comedy antics or fluke bravado, it's a film showcasing the best of Bob Hope and a character persona that served him so well over the years. If only for a tank sequence this deserves a chance to lift your blues, as it is, it's all good, even now, never mind in 1941! 8/10

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