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When a widower with 10 children marries a widow with 8, can the 20 of them ever come together as one big happy family? From finding a house big enough for all of them and learning to make 18 school lunches, to coping with a son going off to war and an unexpected addition to the family, Yours, Mine and Ours attempts to blend two families into one and hopes to answer the question Is bigger really better?Written by
April M. Cheek <Aravis2713@aol.com>
"Yours Mine And Ours" is one of the best "family films" of the 1960s. (Very) loosely based on the real-life story of Helen North, a Navy widow with eight children, who married Navy career man Frank Beardsley, a widower with ten children of his own. Lucille Ball bought the rights to Mrs. Beardsley's book "Who Gets The Drumstick?", co- produced it, and took the starring role of Helen North. For those who know her chiefly as a comedienne, this film will be a pleasant surprise. For not only does she have the opportunity to indulge in some of the slapstick she is famous for, she proves conclusively that she was an excellent dramatic actress as well. Moreover, she can switch abruptly (and seemingly effortlessly) from comedy to pathos, sometimes in the same scene! Henry Fonda takes the part of Frank Beardsley and gives it both dimension and strength. As his bachelor friend, Van Johnson is a welcome presence, as is Tom Bosley as a sardonic doctor. There is also a hilarious performance from Louise Troy, as Frank's date early in the story. The kids are well cast and include future notables Tim Matheson, Suzanne Cupito (who grew up to be Morgan Brittany), Mitch Vogel and Tracy Nelson. A good deal of the plot involves the mutual dislike most of the kids have for their step-siblings, but a great deal of charm is present as well. Aiding the production is a nice score by Fred Karlin, a lovely song "It's A Sometimes World", and handsome San Francisco location photography. A remake has just been completed and will be released around the holiday season, but it's not likely to top this one. Incidentally, if you read the original book by Helen Beardsley, you will most likely come away with a far different picture of the Beardsley family, one which may not have transferred as well to the screen. This may also explain why there is no mention of the book as the story source in the movie's opening credits.
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