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REVIEW: The Bishop’s Wife

December 11, 2015 4 comments
The Bishop's WifeDirected by: Henry Koster
Produced by: Samuel Goldwyn
Written by: Leonardo Bercovici, Robert E. Sherwood, Billy Wilder (uncredited), Charles Brackett (uncredited)
Edited by: Monica Collingwood
Cinematography by: Gregg Toland
Music by: Hugo Freidhofer
Starring: Cary Grant, Loretta Young, David Niven, Monty Woolley, James Gleason, Gladys Cooper, Elsa Lanchester, Sara Haden, Karolyn Grimes
Based on the novel by Robert Nathan
Year: 1947

 

[Some spoilers ahead!]

 

Cary Grant really could sell movies. Want proof? This film did not live up to expectations when it was first released in the U.S. under its normal title, as it was presumed to be too religious (Go figure, America – we weren’t all enamored with religious movies, even back then!), but when the studio had posters’ reflected title changed to Cary and the Bishop’s Wife, ticket sales reportedly jumped by 25%. The film would go on to be nominated for a few Oscars, including Best Sound, Best Director, Best Film Editing, Best Music Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture, and Best Picture. It only won in the Best Sound category, but the nominations are still quite impressive. And, when I did a Google search for “Best Christmas Films” this year and pretty much every year past, The Bishop’s Wife was always up there alongside some of the greatest and even some of my favorites. Having reviewed most of those, however, this year, I figured, was The Bishop’s Wife’s year, particularly since I’ve been meaning to review some older films, anyway. Into the Netflix DVD queue it went! Would it be worth it? Read more…

Review: “It’s a Wonderful Life”

December 14, 2012 6 comments
It's a Wonderful LifeDirected by: Frank Capra
Produced by: Frank Capra
Written by: Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Jo Swerling, Frank Capra (screenplay)
Cinematography by: Joseph Walker
Editing by: William Hornbeck
Music by: Dimitri Tiomkin
Starring: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Henry Travers, Frank Faylen, Ward Bond, Beulah Bondi, Joseph Kearns
Year: 1946
Based on the short story The Greatest Gift by Philip Van Doren Stern

 

It’s almost impossible for me to hear the term “life-affirming” without thinking of something cloying or preachy. One of the few exceptions to this rule, however, is It’s a Wonderful Life — a film that, though undoubtedly now a Christmas season classic, is also a truly profound answer to the questions that may rise up as we go through life and its inherent trials. Read more…

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