6.6/10
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38 user 20 critic

Houseboat (1958)

Unrated | | Comedy, Drama, Family | 11 January 1959 (Japan)
A widower, his three young children, and a bombshell nanny get to know each other better when circumstances have them living together aboard a badly neglected houseboat.

Director:

Melville Shavelson
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cary Grant ... Tom Winters
Sophia Loren ... Cinzia Zaccardi
Martha Hyer ... Carolyn Gibson
Harry Guardino ... Angelo Donatello
Eduardo Ciannelli ... Arturo Zaccardi
Murray Hamilton ... Capt. Alan Wilson
Mimi Gibson ... Elizabeth Winters
Paul Petersen ... David Winters
Charles Herbert ... Robert Winters
Madge Kennedy ... Mrs. Farnsworth
John Litel ... Mr. William Farnsworth
Werner Klemperer ... Harold Messner
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Storyline

Tom Winters, a widower, is trying to understand and raise three precocious children alone. He gets a little unexpected help from Cinzia, when the children decide she is be the new maid. She is actually an Italian socialite who is trying to get away from her overprotective father. Written by Brian W Martz <B.Martz@Genie.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Cary and Sophia...in love with life, each other, and Cary's irresistible, irrepressible kids! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

11 January 1959 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Hausboot See more »

Filming Locations:

Piscataway Creek, Maryland, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the American Film Institute's 2000 list of the 500 movies nominated for the Top 100 Funniest American Movies. See more »

Goofs

Tom's apartment is in Washington, D.C., but when he's shown driving his kids to the concert at the Watergate, he approaches the area from the Virginia side of the Memorial Bridge, the opposite direction from which he should logically have been coming. See more »

Quotes

Tom Winters: [after punishing his son] Well, now where were we?
Cinzia Zaccardi: [She turns on the spray paint and sprays him in the face on purpose] Oops.
Tom Winters: Thank you, Michelangelo. Thank you.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Down Came a Blackbird (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Almost in Your Arms
(uncredited)
Written by Jay Livingston,Ray Evans
Performed by Sophia Loren
See more »

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User Reviews

A Charming, Family-Friendly Comedy!
13 November 2002 | by cariartSee all my reviews

'Houseboat' is a throwback to the kind of sweet, happy comedies Cary Grant did in the late '40s-early 50s, and it foreshadows the domestic comedies James Stewart and Henry Fonda would do in the sixties. Granted, there is more romance (and with Sophia Loren as the objection of affection, Cary has it all OVER Jimmy and Hank!) but ultimately, it scores as a terrific family movie, as Loren, playing an inept but adorable housekeeper/nanny, wins the affection of widower Grant's kids, and awakens in him a more complete love than he was experiencing with his society girlfriend (played effectively by the beautiful Martha Hyer).

Living in a rundown houseboat to save on expenses, Grant and his family's lives had become a boring routine, until the arrival of Hurricane Loren, with her Italian philosophy, her singing, and her unmistakable femininity and sex appeal (which introduces oldest son Paul Peterson to the joys of puberty, and to daughter Mimi Gibson and younger son Charles Herbert a mother-figure they both needed). Grant is at first oblivious to her charms, but she is hard to ignore for long! The question then becomes, when will Cary 'wake up', and realize everything he needs is right on the houseboat?

Filmed after Grant and Loren's whirlwind affair during the filming of 'The Pride and the Passion', the film was a bittersweet experience for both stars, particularly shooting the wedding scene, as Grant still desperately wanted to marry Loren, but she had already decided to remain with longtime love Carlo Ponti. Viewers aware of the 'behind-the-scenes' story will appreciate the performances of the two leads even more!

After you watch 'Houseboat', catch the flipside of this story in Grant's later 'Father Goose', as a drunken reprobate with a boat who must deal with governess Leslie Caron and her charges! The two films make a fascinating double-feature, and showcases Cary Grant's amazing versatility!

Seen either way, 'Houseboat' is a delight!


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