5.9/10
521
15 user 4 critic

On Our Merry Way (1948)

Three short stories revolving around the topic of the daily question posed by the roving reporter to the readers of a daily newspaper.

Writers:

Laurence Stallings (screenplay), Lou Breslow (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paulette Goddard ... Martha Pease
Burgess Meredith ... Oliver M. Pease
James Stewart ... Slim
Henry Fonda ... Lank
Harry James ... Himself (as Harry James)
Dorothy Lamour ... Gloria Manners
Victor Moore ... Ashton Carrington
Fred MacMurray ... Al
William Demarest ... Floyd
Hugh Herbert ... Eli Hobbs
Charles D. Brown Charles D. Brown ... Mr. Sadd
Eduardo Ciannelli ... Maxim
Betty Caldwell ... Cynthia Robbs
Dorothy Ford ... Lola Maxim
Carl 'Alfalfa' Switzer ... Leopold 'Zoot' Wirtz (as Carl Switzer)
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Storyline

Oliver Pease gets a dose of courage from his wife Martha and tricks the editor of the paper (where he writes lost pet notices) into assigning him the day's roving question. Martha suggests, "Has a little child ever changed your life?" Oliver gets answers from two slow-talking musicians, an actress whose roles usually feature a sarong, and an itinerant cardsharp. In each case the "little child" is hardly innocent: in the first, a local auto mechanic's "baby" turns out to be fully developed as a woman and a musician; in the second, a spoiled child star learns kindness; in the third, the family of a lost brat doesn't want him returned. And Oliver, what becomes of him? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It's Hilarious,It's Lyrical--A Comedy Miracle (original print ad) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

June 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Miracle Can Happen See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-edited)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

As already stated, "A Miracle Can Happen" was the original title of this film when released on Feb. 3, 1948, at the Warner Theater in Manhattan. It consisted of three short stories (about 20-25 minutes each) linked by the Burgess Meredith character. He played a reporter looking for a good scoop and in the second sequence Charles Laughton played a bible-reading minister. When it was released nationally in June, however, it had been decided that the "religious" story would be dropped and replaced by a more comic one featuring Dorothy Lamour. The film in this new version was then re-titled "On Our Merry Way." However, prints of the original film had already been sent abroad for dubbing. In Spain, "A Miracle Can Happen" became "Una Encuesta Llamada Milagro", complete with the original Laughton sequence intact (but without the alternative Dorothy Lamour story). As it has been released on DVD there, and retains the English-language soundtrack, the movie can now been seen as it was originally intended. See more »

Alternate Versions

The version released in Spain and always seen on both TV and DVD, in dubbed and subtitled versions (bearing the title card "A Miracle Can Happen"), includes the Charles Laughton episode but not the Dorothy Lamour one. See more »


Soundtracks

My Melancholy Baby
(uncredited)
Music by Ernie Burnett
Played by two trumpeters
See more »

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User Reviews

 
ON OUR MERRY WAY (King Vidor, Leslie Fenton and, uncredited, John Huston and George Stevens, 1948) **1/2
9 February 2007 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

This odd, freewheeling, independently-made compendium film emerges as little more than a glorified home movie (despite the considerable talent involved) but is certainly watchable and entertaining in itself. The linking narrative revolves around married couple Burgess Meredith and Paulette Goddard (at the time hitched in real life): she's an artist and he a lowly employee with a newspaper aspiring to be a journalist; while attempting to flee a creditor, he meets and interviews a number of people about the influence of children in their lives.

The three 'stories' are quite nice with all the various performers contributing generous and relaxed cameos: the first concerns down-and-out musicians Henry Fonda and James Stewart and their involvement in an instrumental contest taking place in a small town (they're all too ready to appease the mayor who has promised them a lot of money if his son is allowed to win but, thanks to the intervention of trumpeter Harry James, a multi-talented girl emerges the clear winner and eventually becomes the owner of Fonda and Stewart's band!); the second finds Dorothy Lamour parodying her former image of a sarong girl (she's a bit player whose opportunity for stardom finally arises out of a disastrous stint in a vehicle for a spoilt child star); the last story, reminiscent of O. Henry's "The Ransom Of Red Chief" (later filmed by Howard Hawks), involves ex-con magician Fred MacMurray and how he and his partner William Demarest stumble upon a boy in the woods and are continually outwitted by him (he's actually fleeing from his eccentric banker uncle but MacMurray eventually discovers his true identity and, in the end, the boy and his elder sister join in on the magic act).


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