November 1942: Once Upon a Honeymoon

Ginger Rogers! Cary Grant! In a romantic Nazi intrigue comedy!

Director Leo McCarey was a veteran director with films like Duck Soup on his resumé, but hadn’t really been super-successful. (He did do An Affair To Remember later, though.)

And… this movie tries so hard. It’s got so much going for it, like Rogers’ preposterous English accent, and Grant hamming it up, and a bunch of scenes that are screwier than a Black & Decker. But somehow the pacing is just off. Instead of jokes landing, I find myself going “Yes, I can see that’s a very good bit. Quite amusing”.

Everything should just have been faster and wilder. It’s like they could have excised one third of the frames out of every scene and this would almost have been a classic.

Well, for the first third, at least. Then it kinda goes totally off the rails. And this DVD restoration shifts between scenes that have pretty good film quality and some that are atrocious, and the latter bits are scenes that are painfully bad. So was this put together from footage found on the editing room floor?

Once Upon a Honeymoon. Leo McCarey. 1942.

Popular movies in November 1942 according to IMDB:

Poster Votes Rating Movie
406184 8.6 Casablanca
2496 7.7 Gentleman Jim
8779 7.7 The Palm Beach Story
4205 7.3 Road to Morocco
2426 7.3 You Were Never Lovelier
541 7.3 ‘Neath Brooklyn Bridge
469 6.9 Springtime in the Rockies
2014 6.5 Once Upon a Honeymoon
247 6.4 Seven Sweethearts
257 6.2 Boston Blackie Goes Hollywood

This blog post is part of the Decade series.

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