Friday, May 31, 2019

Today at Disneyland: Opening Day of Galaxy's Edge, Part 1

Today, May 31, 2019, was an historic day at Disneyland, the Opening Day of Galaxy's Edge.

Two years after carefully examining models of the new "Star Wars Land" at the D23 Expo, we finally got to see the real thing, and it was a wonder. There is so much to share, between the land itself and our stellar experience today, that I'm going to offer a much more detailed Disneyland report than usual and break our day into a four-part series.

We began with a 4:30 a.m. wake-up call so that we could arrive at the resort's Toy Story parking lot around 5:20 a.m. (above). Parking had opened at midnight for those who wanted to line up early. We chose to get some sleep before starting our day!

The resort has been subject to regular parking sellouts in recent weeks, with no parking available for hours at a time, but fortunately the message that Galaxy's Edge could be visited for the next month by reservation only seems to have been driven home, and many without a reservation stayed away. The rest of the park was as uncrowded as I've seen it in recent years, with minimal to no entrance lines even when we left around 2:30.

No lines at the east security checkpoint on the Esplanade (above) or the Disneyland main gate (below) around 5:30 a.m.!

Things were so relaxed we had plenty of time to shoot some dawn photos at the train station before heading into the park.

The wonderful Galaxy's Edge map, printed on heavy paper, will be a special keepsake:

Disneyland had advertised that guests such as ourselves who had an 8:00 a.m. reservation would be allowed into the park at 6:00 a.m., but they actually started letting people in about an hour earlier.

After passing an initial checkpoint and showing our reservation (above), we were funneled behind Main Street, exiting at Plaza Inn...

...and then slowly walking to the Innoventions building -- that's the America Sings building for those of you who were around in the '70s -- which is serving as "Launch Bay" for Galaxy's Edge.

The crowds look big but it was well ordered; in fact, that was one of the great surprises of the day. We've had some bad experiences with Disney lines in the past, including at the D23 Expo, but every organizational aspect today ran like clockwork. The park was also well-prepared with plenty of Cast Members (CMs) on hand.

We received a wonderful surprise when after registering and receiving our wristbands we were told that we would be able to go upstairs and buy opening day merchandise. The merchandise had been advertised to open at 8:00 a.m. and would not be sold in Galaxy's Edge itself, so we had thought we would be missing out. Instead we were delighted to all come out with Annual Passholder opening day t-shirts with this design:

By 7:00 a.m. we were registered, had our merchandise, and were part of this huge crowd waiting near the submarines in Tomorrowland. It looks claustrophic but once CMs started walking us toward Galaxy's Edge around 7:40 a.m. people spread out a little and it was fine.

When we got to Fantasyland CMs started greeting us with waves and high fives, amping up our excitement.

We got to the Galaxy's Edge entrance...

...and costumed CMs and execs alike lined the path, cheering, waving, high-fiving, and taking photos. You can see some official Disney video here, and there's guest video from another perspective here.

It was an historic and emotional moment receiving that greeting and walking into Galaxy's Edge, and I wasn't the only one whose eyes welled with happy tears and excitement.

In future posts I'll be sharing photos of the Millennium Falcon and the surrounding land, our experiences with the Smugglers Run ride and some of the food and shopping, and more. As a Smugglers Run pilot I made the jump to hyperspace, and it was amazing!

Please check back on Saturday for Part 2 in this series! In the meantime, please enjoy this Disney video in which three families experience Galaxy's Edge for the first time. The awed little girl whispering "Wow" when she walks into the Millennium Falcon captures how a great many of us felt today.

Update: Here are links to Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.

February 2020 Update: Yesterday at Disneyland: Rise of the Resistance.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Bitter Creek (1954)

"Wild" Bill Elliott stars in BITTER CREEK (1954), the kind of film which exemplifies what some of us like to refer to as a "darn good Western." I found it enjoyable start to finish.

Elliott plays Clay Tyndall, who arrives in the Western town of Bitter Creek searching for the man who killed his brother. Although it takes Clay a while to figure it out, the viewer knows early on that rancher Quentin Allen (Carleton Young) and his hired hands, headed by Vance Morgan (Claude Akins), are responsible.

Clay forges relationships with several locals, including Dr. Prentiss (Jim Hayward), A.Z. the stagecoach driver (John Harmon), and Allen's cook Harley (Forrest Taylor), as he searches for the man responsible, while the sheriff (Dabbs Greer) watches the goings-on with a wary eye.

Complicating matters is Clay's attraction to Allen's fiancee, Gail Bonner (Beverly Garland), who's just arrived in town from St. Louis -- and gradually comes to reciprocate his feelings.

This is a fast-paced 74-minute story with a good script by George Waggner. Director Thomas Carr keeps things moving along, yet the actors have the time to create unique characters who develop interesting relationships, with the interplay between Elliott and Hayward especially enjoyable.

Elliott is his usual taciturn self, but he makes clear he's got a heart under the stoic exterior which is beating for the charming Garland.

Garland does a very nice job breathing life into her character, a woman who was fascinated by the idea of living in the west but comes to realize she chose the wrong man. My only complaint is I wish there had been more of her in the movie; based on some stills I've found on the internet, seen here, it seems possible some of her part was left on the cutting room floor, unless they filmed some action publicity stills outdoors. That's possible as well, as I can't necessarily figure out how the scenes in the photographs would have fit into the story!

Garland was in a number of movies the year this was released; she also starred with Wayne Morris in the excellent Western THE DESPERADO (1954) -- in which Greer again played the sheriff -- and she also costarred in THE MIAMI STORY (1954), reviewed here earlier this week.

BITTER CREEK was filmed in black and white by Ernest Miller at Southern California locations including Iverson Ranch and Corriganville.

The supporting cast includes Veda Ann Borg, Dan Mummert, and John Pickard.

This movie is unfortunately not yet on DVD; I've been hoping that the Warner Archive will eventually release it, as they have put out Elliott's other Westerns for Allied Artists. I saw the film thanks to a past airing on Turner Classic Movies.

Fans of Elliott and '50s "B" Westerns should find this one quite enjoyable.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Paris Can Wait (2016)

A woman wondering about the next phase of her life finds new insights on an unexpected two-day journey to Paris in PARIS CAN WAIT (2016).

Diane Lane plays Anne Lockwood, who's accompanying her movie producer husband Michael (Alec Baldwin) while he works on location in Europe. Anne has recently closed her clothing business and sent their daughter off to college and is attempting to spend more time with her preoccupied husband.

Anne's plan to fly with her husband from Cannes to Budapest is stymied by ear pain which makes flying inadvisable. Jacques (Arnaud Viard), one of Michael's colleagues, offers to drive Anne to Paris, where she'll meet Michael at his next stop after Budapest.

Jacques has a very laid-back attitude when it comes to getting to Paris, and what was expected to be a day-long drive turns into two days of sightseeing, sampling fine restaurants...and gradually revealing more of themselves to one another, including sharing the most painful moments in their lives.

PARIS CAN WAIT was written and directed by Eleanor Coppola, wife of Francis Ford Coppola and mother of Sofia; this was her first feature film, released the year she turned 80! She does a fine job, to the extent one wonders about the good movies we missed out on because her career didn't begin at a younger age.

As PARIS CAN WAIT unfolds over 92 minutes, it's interesting deducing what's behind the characters; for instance, is Jacques just a nice friend who enjoys life and showing off his country to an American, or is he perhaps a bit manipulative and taking advantage of the situation, hoping a light flirtation could develop into something more? All of the above? And what's with his cash flow problem?

Viard's personality is appealing enough that Jacques remains good company even when Anne -- and the viewer -- wonder just what's going on at certain points. And in the end his motivations don't really matter so much, as what's important is what Anne takes away from the journey, as she literally stops to smell the roses and rediscover herself as an individual.

Diane Lane is charming and authentic as the grounded (literally and figuratively) Anne; her reactions, including expressing awkwardness, polite impatience, and clear delight, are utterly real. I loved Anne's habit of whipping out her camera to shoot anything which takes her fancy, especially small details such as part of a croissant or a close-up of an ancient wall, and the pleasure she takes in doing so.

Lane is onscreen for almost the entire film, and it's most enjoyable watching her. This film made me want to rewatch some of her earlier movies and check out some for the first time -- I've been meaning to get to SECRETARIAT...

PARIS CAN WAIT would make a nice double bill with Lane's UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN (2003), another film about a woman taking a fresh look at her life in France. It's rather interesting to note that some of the key films in Lane's career have been set in France, going all the way back to A LITTLE ROMANCE (1979) when she was a teenager.

I don't care for Alec Baldwin, but that actually works in the context of the movie, as he plays a man so consumed by his work that he pays little attention to his wife, other than to treat her as someone to cater to his needs. It also helps that he's not onscreen for very long!

The movie was filmed by Crystel Fournier, showing off the beautiful French countryside and gorgeously plated food to perfection.

PARIS CAN WAIT is available on DVD, Blu-ray, or via streaming.

Parental Advisory: This film is rated PG. There are a couple of adult moments, including the implication that Jacques has had a quick afternoon fling with a friend while Anne is otherwise occupied, but it's handled subtly. For the most part it's family-friendly, though I feel the storyline will naturally be appreciated more by mature adults.

A trailer is here.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Tonight's Movie: The Miami Story (1954)

Barry Sullivan stars in THE MIAMI STORY (1954), a thoroughly enjoyable docu-noir recently released on Blu-ray.

Sullivan plays Mick Flagg, a one-time gangster who's now a widower, living a quiet rural life with his young son (David Kasday, INVITATION TO THE DANCE).

With mob activity in Miami out of control, a group of concerned citizens comes together to support the police in rousting the gangsters out of the city. Among these men is an attorney (Dan Riss) who helped Flagg justly obtain an acquittal for murder; he appeals to Flagg to help rid the city of the mob.

Flagg agrees, feeling it's time to repay a debt to the attorney and society; he also wants to redeem himself in the eyes of his mortified son, who was unaware of his background -- and $50,000 guaranteed to go to his son won't hurt either.

Flagg parks his son with friends and makes a big splash arriving in Miami, shaking up top mobster Tony Brill (Luther Adler) -- who not so coincidentally is the man who framed Flagg for murder.

A young woman named Holly (Beverly Garland) who is looking for her missing sister Gwen (Adele Jergens) becomes inadvertently mixed up in the goings-on, as unknown to Holly, Gwen runs a prostitution racket for Brill.

THE MIAMI STORY is an action-packed 75 minutes, from the opening sequence with two Cubans murdered as they disembark from a plane at the Miami Airport. It's a pretty rough film as these things go -- at one point Holly is beaten horribly by Brill's men -- but it's also an exciting and interesting story.

Sullivan is absolutely tops as Flagg; watching him easily transform from mild-mannered dad to charismatic mob kingpin is a terrific viewing experience. I like Sullivan all the time but he's at his best when he's playing a somewhat shady man who does good things; the Western DRAGOON WELLS MASSACRE (1957) is another good example. While on his quest for justice he doesn't hesitate to smack not one but two different women around, not having time for niceties when lives are at stake; at the same time it's clear he also has a tender, more regretful side.

Jergens, another longtime favorite, is especially good here as a hard-bitten woman who's just a little too far past her prime and knows it. The movie is frank about her end of the business, hooking women up with "dates," and she's clearly not a nice lady, even when her own sister is involved.

It's fun to see George E. Stone, the Runt from the Boston Blackie series, as a small-time hood Flagg has the police spring from jail to be one of his deputies in his supposed crime business.

The film has one of those omniscient narrators I love in crime films; in this case it's William Woodson. Woodson also narrated TRAPPED (1949), which I saw at two different film festivals this year, and he was the narrator of the sci-fi classics IT CAME FROM BENEATH THE SEA (1955) and EARTH VS. THE FLYING SAUCERS (1956).

THE MIAMI STORY was directed by Fred F. Sears and filmed in widescreen black and white by Henry Freulich.

Establishing shots are used of the Sans Souci Hotel, which existed in Miami until 1996, when it became the Riu Florida Beach Hotel.

THE MIAMI STORY may be nothing particularly new, but it's executed with flair and I had a very good time watching it. Fans of this style movie in general -- and fans of Sullivan in particular -- should find it's right up their alley.

THE MIAMI STORY had a single-title release on DVD in 2014 in the Sony Choice Collection MOD (manufactured on demand) line.

It was just released on Blu-ray in the Noir Archive 9-Film Collection. This set is Volume 1, containing films from 1944 to 1954; Volume 2 (1954-56) is due out in July and, per Toby at The Hannibal 8, Volume 3 (1956-60) will be released later in the year.

I purchased the Blu-ray collection and if the other films look as good as THE MIAMI STORY, the set is a great deal; I've previously seen several of the titles thanks to film festivals or Turner Classic Movies. Visit Amazon for a list of the titles.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Tonight's Movie: Never So Few (1959) - A Warner Archive Blu-ray Review

Most years I try to watch a combat film during Memorial Day weekend, and this year that film was NEVER SO FEW (1959), available on Blu-ray from the Warner Archive.

Frank Sinatra leads a starry cast in this tale of American and British intelligence operatives and soldiers leading native Kachin warriors against the Japanese in Burma. Although outnumbered approximately 40,000 to 1,000, the Kachin successfully disrupt Japanese operations, culminating in taking out a Japanese airfield.

When Sinatra's Captain Tom Reynolds isn't in the jungle, he's trying to romance Gina Lollobrigida away from wealthy and mysterious Paul Henreid.

The plot is fairly simplistic, not amounting to much more than is described above, other than when it leaves the jungle to deal with murky American-Chinese political machinations near the end.

Objectively speaking this film really isn't all that good, with any number of things wrong with it. Director John Sturges has surely made a number of films which are far better, as have various cast members. Despite that, I didn't dislike the movie and found it rather entertaining, despite its issues. While I can't precisely recommend it, a film fan could do far worse than spending a couple of hours with this cast.

The film's problems begin with something as small as the fake-looking goatee Sinatra wears in the opening scenes, which fortunately disappears after he leaves the front for a trip to headquarters. More significantly, one can't help feeling much could have been done to give the script and characters more depth. There's a lot of screen time, 125 minutes, yet the movie doesn't go much of anywhere or delve very far into any character other than Sinatra's.

The film derives its strength from a strong cast, including the up-and-coming Steve McQueen and Charles Bronson. Bronson is unfortunately underused as a Navajo code talker, which could have been really interesting if elaborated on more deeply; McQueen has more of a chance to shine as a young man who shares Sinatra's daring temperament and receives a battlefield commission.

Dean Jones is appealing as the group's communications man, and Peter Lawford has a few scenes as a doctor who's conscripted into the unit. (His horror when learning he'll have to parachute into the jungle is pretty funny.) Whit Bissell, who sometimes seems as if he was in every other film released in the '50s, plays a psychiatrist trying to save Sinatra's character from a court-martial.

Best of all, Brian Donlevy swoops in to the last 15 minutes or so of the movie and wakes the film up as a general who does the unexpected.

The Sinatra-Lollobrigida romance feels fairly perfunctory, and there's a certain "ick" factor with Sinatra romancing her while she's Henreid's mistress. I usually like when women are cast in a war film, in part as it provides a break from the tensions of combat scenes, but in this case the story feels tacked on to the rest of the movie just so the film could boast Lollobrigida among the cast; her bathtub scene feels particularly gratuitous. I suspect the studio marketing team had a field day using stills of Lollobrigida in the tub to help sell the movie!

There are a couple other scenes which may leave the viewer feeling queasy, including a moment early on when Sinatra kills one of his own mortally wounded men to put him out of his misery. The film is tonally all over the place, going from a disturbing scene like that to Sinatra and pal Richard Johnson comically brawling for laughs just minutes later.

The cast also includes John Hoyt, Philip Ahn, Kipp Hamilton, Robert Bray, Irene Tedrow, and Ross Elliott.

The Warner Archive Blu-ray is a terrific print showing off William H. Daniels' widescreen photography. The sound quality is also excellent. The disc includes the trailer.

Thanks to the Warner Archive for providing a review copy of this Blu-ray. Warner Archive Blu-rays may be ordered from Amazon or from any online retailers where DVDs and Blu-rays are sold.

Tonight's Movie: Gangway for Tomorrow (1943) - A Warner Archive DVD Review

GANGWAY FOR TOMORROW (1943), a World War II morale-boosting film, has just been released on DVD by the Warner Archive.

Like the prior year's Warner Bros. film WINGS FOR THE EAGLE (1942), this RKO movie pays tribute to defense plant workers. It's a bit unusual in that it's something of an anthology film; as Jim Benson (Charles Arnt) drives five of his coworkers to the factory, each of their unique stories is told in flashback, emphasizing how people from all backgrounds and walks of life are working together to win the war.

The most gripping story belongs to Lisette (Margo), a singer who worked with the French Resistance. Lisette's friends are executed by the Nazis, but she escapes and is able to warn others in their network and then ultimately makes her way to America. This sequence is both memorable and disturbing, including an execution scene in which Lisette must part with her pianist boyfriend Jean (Richard Martin, who later played Chito in Tim Holt Westerns).

Joe (Robert Ryan) was a race car driver seriously injured in a crash just before he was due to enlist; sad that he's now unable to serve, he tells his friends "I'll make 'em and you fly 'em." The film is a good opportunity to see Ryan in an early role, released just ahead of his breakthrough part the same year in TENDER COMRADE (1943).

In the third flashback, Mary Jones (Amelita Ward), a former Miss America, gives up her floundering career in show business to build planes, hoping to help her boyfriend (William Terry) make it safely home from his wartime service.

The two strangest stories belong to to Tom (James Bell) and Mr. Wellington (John Carradine). Tom is a former prison warden who suffered through having to order his brother's execution, which led to their mother's death from the stress. Mr. Wellington was a hobo living "off the grid" who decides to do something to help when he realizes what's going on in the world.

With the movie running only 69 minutes, the flashback stories are necessarily fairly short. Overall they're moderately interesting, though I'm really not sure why Tom's ultra-downer story was included in this patriotic film; I felt it was a rather bizarre inclusion.

Those who share my interest in WWII morale-boosting films will find the film of the greatest value. The flag-waving final moments, as the workers march into the factory while war planes fly overhead to the music of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," is worth waiting for. I'm sure there are those who would find it over the top, but I like to imagine what the public would have felt in 1943, and I'm sure those working in the military and defense plants, along with their families, would have found it encouraging.

GANGWAY FOR TOMORROW was directed by John H. Auer and filmed in black and white by Nicholas Musuraca. The screenplay was by Arch Oboler, from an original story by Aladar Laszlo.

The cast also includes Harry Davenport, Sam McDaniel, Alan Carney, Wally Brown, Warren Hymer, and Rita Corday.

The Warner Archive DVD is a good print. There are no extras on the disc.

Thanks to the Warner Archive for providing a review copy of this DVD. Warner Archive releases are MOD (manufactured on demand) and may be ordered from the Warner Archive Collection at the WBShop or from any online retailers where DVDs and Blu-rays are sold.

On Memorial Day

Remembering today, with deepest gratitude, the brave men and women who have given their all for our nation and our freedom.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Tonight's Movie: The Big Clock (1948) - An Arrow Academy Blu-ray Review

The terrific crime thriller THE BIG CLOCK (1948) has just been released by Arrow Academy on a beautiful Blu-ray.

I first reviewed THE BIG CLOCK here a decade ago and was fortunate to see it on a big screen a few years ago in Palm Springs at the Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival.

This is definitely a film worthy of revisiting with some regularity; while the plot may no longer hold surprises on repeat viewings, my appreciation for star Ray Milland's performance and the film's great style deepens each time I see it.

Milland plays George Stroud, who holds a senior position at Janoth Publications. Earl Janoth (Charles Laughton) is the overly controlling, manipulative man behind the company, which publishes magazine titles such as Styleways, Sportways, Airways, Newsways, and, most importantly for our story, Crimeways, where George is editor.

George has a big problem unfold when he misses meeting his wife (Maureen O'Sullivan) for a long-promised train trip and ends up getting drunk alongside Janoth's mistress Pauline (Rita Johnson). Pauline later turns up dead, and George and his staff are tasked with solving the crime. George's problem is twofold: He was the last person seen with Pauline, so the hunt is actually on for himself...and the real culprit is his boss.

If the plot sounds vaguely familiar, the story was also loosely used in the Kevin Costner film NO WAY OUT (1987), with Costner trapped in the Pentagon. While the Pentagon was an inspired choice as a setting, it still can't compete with the gorgeous Art Deco building of this movie, dominated by a huge lobby clock. (When a tourist asks what happens if the clock is wrong, the answer is "Mr. Janoth wouldn't allow it!") One of my favorite things about the movie is the different "looks" as the elevator door opens on each magazine's floor. The set design is terrific "eye candy" from start to finish.

I loved film historian Foster Hirsch's description of THE BIG CLOCK when I saw it in Palm Springs; he said then that the film is "about control and what will happen if people lose it," also noting that while everyone works in an environment dominated by the title clock, the characters "can't regulate themselves." Janoth is a man so controlling that he monitors a light bulb being left on in a broom closet for several days and insists the person responsible have their pay docked...yet when it came to something like murder, he found it impossible to control himself. Although one could flip that and say that he exercised the ultimate control over someone else in killing Pauline.

Laughton is almost difficult to watch, with his creepy affectations such as running his finger over his mustache; at least it makes it easy to root against him. Laughton's real-life wife Elsa Lanchester provides delightful comic relief as an artist who improbably becomes George's ally. George Macready and Harry Morgan are on hand and appropriately spooky as Janoth's henchmen; Macready plays an executive who's a smooth operator, while Morgan is a silent "enforcer" type who always seems to be looking over George's shoulder.

I'd forgotten that Elaine Riley is an investigative reporter working for George; she's wearing glasses here in a still of magazine employees working on the case. Riley, who appeared in a number of "B" Westerns, was long married to Richard Martin ("Chito" of Tim Holt's RKO Westerns).

Also in the large cast: Dan Tobin, Theresa Harris, Frank Orth, Lloyd Corrigan, and Richard Webb. Ruth Roman is said to be a secretary at a meeting but I have trouble picking her out; however, I definitely noticed Bess Flowers as one of the attendees.

The film runs a well-paced 95 minutes. It was directed by John Farrow; incidentally, although O'Sullivan was married to Farrow, she was required to try out for her part!

The film was shot in black and white by Daniel L. Fapp and John F. Seitz. It was written by Jonathan Latimer based on a novel by Kenneth Fearing.

The Arrow Blu-ray print looks wonderful, showing off the film's stylish settings to perfection. It was a real pleasure to view it.

The plentiful extras include the trailer, an informative audio commentary by Adrian Martin, new featurettes, a stills gallery, and the 1948 Lux Radio Theater broadcast starring Ray Milland, Maureen O'Sullivan, and William Conrad (in Laughton's role); Jeff Chandler is also in the voice cast, playing two different roles.

The first pressing from Arrow will also include a collector's booklet with an essay by Christina Newland which was not included in the advance copy I reviewed. Reversible cover art will also be available on the final retail edition.

Highly recommended.

Thanks to Arrow Academy for providing a review copy of this Blu-ray.

Tonight's Movie: Three Men on a Horse (1936) - A Warner Archive DVD Review

Frank McHugh stars as a man with a knack for picking winning horses in the comedy THREE MEN ON A HORSE (1936), newly released on DVD by the Warner Archive.

THREE MEN ON A HORSE was based on a 1935 Broadway play by George Abbott and John Cecil Holm, starring, among others, Garson Kanin, Millard Mitchell, Shirley Booth, and Sam Levene, who reprises his role in this film.

Erwin (McHugh) is suspected of cheating on his dimwitted wife Audrey (Carol Hughes) when she finds a little notebook in his pants with strange scribblings she suspects are code for girlfriends. The truth is that Erwin enjoys picking out winning racehorses "just for fun" and writing them down in the notebook; he always wins but never bets, as he believes it would be foolish on his tight income.

After Audrey's overbearing loudmouth brother (Paul Harvey) berates Erwin one time too many, Erwin goes out and gets good and drunk. A trio of gangsters (Levene, Allen Jenkins, Teddy Hart) in the bar realize Erwin's  talent for picking winning horses and won't let him go home, to the consternation of Audrey as well as Erwin's boss at a greeting card company (Guy Kibbee).

This was the second movie of the weekend starring Joan Blondell, who plays Levene's girlfriend Mabel; I previously saw her in the following year's STAND-IN (1937). Other than Blondell, the cast is comprised of familiar character actors rather than any big names.

I was pleasantly surprised by the film; it's not great, but it's enjoyable, sustaining interest throughout. Certain scenes, especially when Erwin meets the gangsters in a bar, very much feel like a filmed stage play, but it works; it's quite a treat to see Levene, Jenkins, McHugh, and Blondell doing their thing with some pretty good dialogue. I rather liked being able to imagine what it would have been like to see them all doing this show in a theater.

The film does peter out at 86 minutes and feels like it should end earlier, around the time Erwin finally shows up at home; I felt it would have been better if it were a good ten minutes shorter. Additionally, it does get a bit loud and crazy toward the end, especially when Audrey starts crying and whining "Erwin!" over and over. All in all, though, I found it pleasant Sunday afternoon entertainment.

Carol Hughes is quite amusing as Audrey; she more typically played small parts or starred in "B" films; she was the leading lady of Roy Rogers' first big starring film, UNDER WESTERN STARS (1938).

The cast also includes Eddie "Rochester" Anderson, Harry Davenport, Edgar Kennedy, Virginia Sale, and Charles Lane, who I found quite funny as a sarcastic dry cleaning deliveryman.

THREE MEN ON A HORSE was directed by Mervyn LeRoy and filmed by Sol Polito.

The Warner Archive DVD is a good print with a solid soundtrack. The disc includes the trailer.

Thanks to the Warner Archive for providing a review copy of this DVD. Warner Archive releases are MOD (manufactured on demand) and may be ordered from the Warner Archive Collection at the WBShop or from any online retailers where DVDs and Blu-rays are sold.

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