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Critic's Choice (1963)

Approved | | Comedy | 13 April 1963 (USA)
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Parker Ballantine is a New York theater critic and his wife writes a play that may or may not be very good. Now Parker must either get out of reviewing the play or cause the breakup of his marriage.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ivy London
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Dion Kapakos
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S.P. Champlain
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Dr. William Von Hagedorn
Ricky Kelman ...
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Mrs. Margaret Champlain
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Sally Orr
Joseph Gallison ...
Philip 'Phil' Yardley (as Evan McCord)
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Marge Orr
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Harvey Rittenhouse
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Joe Rosenfield
Donald Losby ...
Geoffrey Von Hagedorn
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Storyline

Parker Ballantine is the most respected and forthright of the New York theater critics. Most of his closest friends are part of the Broadway community, such as his ex-wife actress Ivy London and producer S.P. Champlain. These friendships are not affected by bad reviews from Parker. Angie Ballantine is Parker's current devoted and faithful wife, who goes with him to show openings and even waits in the newsroom for him to write his reviews. Parker and Ivy's son, John Ballantine, lives with his father and Angie, who he loves. Angie has had problems in her life seeing projects through to completion, so Parker reacts with some skepticism when Angie announces she plans to write an autobiographical play about her growing up period. This project does become one that Angie does see through to completion, at least to a first draft stage, and despite Parker's disdainful reaction to at least the process, she is eager for his opinion on this draft. He complies. He hates it and tells her as such. ... Written by Huggo

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Taglines:

Everybody's 'choice' for a great big wonderful time! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

13 April 1963 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cuando el corazón manda  »

Company Credits

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Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The collage of stylized posters for Broadway plays (The Music Man, Life With Father, Fanny, Gypsy, Camelot) that appeared under the opening credits, were all productions that had (or in the case of Camelot, would later be) filmed by Warner Bros. See more »

Goofs

As the kitchen scene with Angela, Parker and John is ending there is a shot that has the stove top grill visible. There is a small but evident amount of smoke rising from it. Possibly a crew member's or Bob Hope's cigarette dropped in the grill between shots. See more »

Quotes

John Ballantine: So, the trouble must be psychosomatic. Nonorganic, therefore psychically motivated.
Parker Ballantine: Will you stop talking like a child?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Ending: "The absolute End" See more »

Connections

References Life with Father (1947) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Two comedy greats together for some light fun
4 September 2012 | by See all my reviews

Mention the name Lucille Ball, and what comes to mind for most of us is the zany character in the long-running 1950s TV comedy show, "I Love Lucy." But, I wonder if Lucy started out with a wish to be a comedienne, or if she had her eyes on any other fields of stage or screen. Comedy was part of her early roles, but she also had roles in which she sang and danced ("Dance, Girl, Dance" of 1940). And there can be no doubt about her acting ability from such dramatic and suspense films as "Valley of the Sun" and "The Big Street" in 1942; or "The Dark Corner" in 1946; or "Lured" in 1947.

On the other hand, there's little doubt about Bob Hope's aspirations. From his earliest days in vaudeville, Hope was a comedian, and he would always be a comedian. For all his kidding aside about earning as Oscar, Bob knew that he had little chance because Oscar very rarely went to a comedian. He even made his overt desire for an Oscar a part of his long- running comedy routines, and it was sure to get a laugh decade after decade

That doesn't mean that Bob Hope didn't do some very funny movies. But his type of humor wasn't the subtle, clever or zany type that usually involved great or very good acting. Clark Gable, James Stewart, Carole Lombard and Claudette Colbert were some of the very accomplished dramatic actors who could do Oscar-winning caliber comedy in movies. Bob's comedy forte was the one-liner. Or, make that, a string of one- liners, one after the other. And in that, he often aroused some great laughter.

So, that brings us to this movie, "Critic's Choice." This film is meant to be a semi-serious movie about Broadway and a critic's life, with a comedic outlook. And Lucy plays a serious character, a "straight man" to Bob's wisecracks and one-liners. I think it was intended as a light comedy to begin with, sans any zaniness on Lucy's part. The very funny parts are in the last half with Bob. He has some zany scenes himself, and a few strings of one-liners that bring out loud laughter. Some examples are: "This is the drunkenest room I've ever been in." "This apartment's all uphill." And, "I'd just like to be there when we get where I'm going."

"Critic's Choice" is a nice film for an evening of light entertainment, and worth watching just to see two of the great comics of all time together.


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