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The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1943)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance, War | February 1944 (USA)
After an all-night send-off party for the troops, a small-town girl wakes up to find herself married and pregnant, but with no memory of her husband's identity.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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The biography of Dr. W. T. Morgan, a 19th century Boston dentist, during his quest to have anesthesia, in the form of ether, accepted by the public and the medical and dental establishment.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Norval Jones
... Trudy Kockenlocker
... Emmy Kockenlocker
... Constable Edmund Kockenlocker
... Justice of the Peace
... Mr. Tuerck
... Mr. Johnson (as Alan Bridge)
... Mr. Rafferty
... Newspaper Editor
... Governor McGinty (as McGinty)
... The Boss
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Storyline

Trudy Kockenlocker, a small-town girl with a soft spot for American soldiers, wakes up the morning after a wild farewell party for the troops to find that she married someone she can't remember--and she's pregnant. Norval Jones, the 4-F local boy who's been in love with Trudy for years, tries to help her find a way out of her predicament. Trudy complicates matters further by falling for Norval, and events snowball from there. Written by James Meek <james@oz.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The True Story of Trudy Kockenlocker, who kissed the Boys Goodbye... REGIMENT BY REGIMENT! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

February 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El milagro de Morgan Creek  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The long tracking shots of Betty Hutton and Eddie Bracken (and also Hutton and Diana Lynn) delivering pages of dialogue while walking for five minutes down several blocks of the town streets were extremely complex to film for that era. Cameras were placed on tracks and pulled backwards by six crewmembers. The sound crew also walked backwards with handheld boom microphones, while other assistants maneuvered 300 yards of cable, lights and reflectors. Preston Sturges and John Seitz shot more than 11,000 feet of film before they got the desired footage (400 feet) they needed. See more »

Goofs

When Norval and Mr. Kockenlocker are sitting on the front porch talking, Mr. Kockenlocker is cleaning his gun. He has an automatic pistol, he cocks it to open the chamber for cleaning, and in the next scene he cocks it again. See more »

Quotes

Emmy: [on taking out $900 from the bank in the middle of the night] It might be wrong but it would be very handy.
See more »

Connections

References The Bride Wore Crutches (1940) See more »

Soundtracks

Sleepy Summer Days
(uncredited)
Music by Ted Snyder
Lyrics by Preston Sturges
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A subversive satirical gem

Writer-director Preston Sturges is generally regarded as one of the greatest comic talents ever, and his impeccable track record--including The Lady Eve and Sullivan's Travels--is more than worthy of the praise. Often overlooked, The Miracle Of Morgan's Creek ranks with Sturges' absolute best work.

Sturges takes an almost Capra-esque WWII America and turns it on its pointy little head, with Betty Hutton as a girl who's more than willing to give "the boys" departing for the war the utmost reason to fight for our country. Stripped of her usual production numbers, Hutton cranks up her comic acting skills and creates a surprisingly rich characterization of a young woman straining against the restrictive social attitudes of the time. Eddie Bracken is his usual self-effacing self, and his sad-sack Norval Jones is an earnest, often moving portrayal of the kind of understanding, devotion and love almost never seen in American movies of the era.

A "screwball comedy" only on paper, the often frenetic pacing and physical humor was sufficient to distract censors (and often audiences) from Morgan Creek's almost brutally derisive satire about the hypocrisy of small town "values" and military behavior during wartime, satire that still resonates given the current political climate. No target is safe, from "the troops" and bucolic Anywhere USA to state governors, the Dionne quints, and Adolf Hitler. Sturges pushed hard against the production code and probably earned a few ulcers slipping racy plot twists and subversive dialogue past the censors, but the results were well worth the Maalox. One of the funniest and most pointed satirical comedies ever produced.


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