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The More the Merrier (1943)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance, War | 13 May 1943 (USA)
During the World War II housing shortage in Washington, two men and a woman share a single apartment and the older man plays Cupid to the other two.

Director:

George Stevens

Writers:

Robert Russell (screen play), Frank Ross (screen play) | 4 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jean Arthur ... Connie Milligan
Joel McCrea ... Joe Carter
Charles Coburn ... Benjamin Dingle
Richard Gaines ... Charles J. Pendergast
Bruce Bennett ... FBI Agent Evans
Frank Sully ... FBI Agent Pike
Donald Douglas ... FBI Agent Harding (as Don Douglas)
Clyde Fillmore Clyde Fillmore ... Senator Noonan
Stanley Clements ... Morton Rodakiewicz
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Storyline

It's World War II and there is a severe housing shortage everywhere - especially in Washington, D.C. where Connie Milligan rents an apartment. Believing it to be her patriotic duty, Connie offers to sublet half of her apartment, fully expecting a suitable female tenent. What she gets instead is mischievous, middle-aged Benjamin Dingle. Dingle talks her into subletting to him and then promptly sublets half of his half to young, irreverent Joe Carter - creating a situation tailor-made for comedy and romance. Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What would you do if you had to share your home with two strange men? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 May 1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Merry-Go-Round See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

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 flower that Joe is wearing on his lapel after getting married is a sprig of the lily of the valley, a traditional wedding flower. See more »

Goofs

Connie is in Mr. Dingles room having a discussion. They are both in pajamas. The top button of Connie's PJ top is unbuttoned. As she turns to her left to go to the next room the top button is buttoned and there are no gaps between buttons as before. Clearly not enough "real time" to have fixed it. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: Our vagabond camera takes us to beautiful Washington, D.C., the national capital of our United States, situated on the broad banks of the Potomac River. Living is pleasant and leisurely... for it is a city of formality and custom. Manners and courtesy are responsible for the well-ordered conduct of its daily affairs. The many fine restaurants of Washington are the delight of the epicurean and the gourmet, where one may enjoy to the full the rare dishes of the old south. ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Budd Boetticher: A Man Can Do That (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

What Is This Thing Called Love?
(1929) (uncredited)
Written by Cole Porter
Played on a record and often in the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Comic masterpiece!
6 August 2002 | by zetesSee all my reviews

Easily the best film that I've ever seen from George Stevens (and I really like several of his other films). Jean Arthur stars as a woman renting out half of her apartment because of a housing shortage in Washington D.C. Charles Coburn, who is in Washington to help solve the crisis, weasles his way into the apartment even though Arthur didn't want a male roommate. The morning after, Joel McCrea arrives with yesterday's newspaper, not knowing that the vacancy exists no more. No matter, though. Coburn rents half of his half of the apartment to McCrea, unbeknownst to Arthur. God knows this premise could have made one hell of a sitcom, but it also makes a damn funny movie. There isn't an unfunny scene in the entire film, and several scenes vie for the title of Best Romantic Comedy of all times with Preston Sturges' contemporaneous films. The three performers are remarkable. They have great chemistry as a comic trio, and McCrea and Arthur throw sparks off the screen with their surprisingly erotic romance. I failed to mention that Arthur is engaged to an older man, adding to the dilemma. Richard Gaines is also excellent as that fiancé. I love the way his mouth moves. Grady Sutton has a very funny cameo near the end of the film as a waiter. Stevens' direction is exceptional. It's shocking how believably he pulls off the scene in which McCrea and Arthur wander around the apartment without bumping into each other. This is reminiscent of a famous scene from Buster Keaton's The Navigator, and it's even funnier. Or that intimate scene where McCrea gives a carrying case to Jean Arthur. Their acting is so subtly romantic in that scene. I love the way Stevens films it. 10/10.


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