This week ends with the release of classic movies from the 1940s featuring a Movies Unlimited’s favorite the 1947 holiday comedy The Bishop’s Wife. Also available from the year 1940 is Music for Millions (1944), and Van Johnson in Scene of the Crime (1949).
|This Land Is Mine (1943)||Scene of the Crime (1949)||Salute to the Marines (1943)|
Music for Millions (1944)
Morale-building musical finds young Margaret O’Brien trying to look out for big sister June Allyson, a cellist in Jose Iturbi’s orchestra with a husband MIA overseas and a baby on the way. Substantial hodgepodge of drama, songs, and laughter co-stars Jimmy Durante, Marsha Hunt, Hugh Herbert, Marie Wilson. Score includes “Umbriago,” “Toscanini, Iturbi and Me,” and “The March of the Toys.”
Salute to the Marines (1943)
After three decades in the Corps–without having seen actual combat–Philippines-stationed drill instructor Wallace Beery makes a reluctant attempt to return to civilian life. In the wake of Pearl Harbor, he rallies the locals to defend against Japanese invaders. Unabashed flag-waver also stars Fay Bainter, Reginald Owen, Marilyn Maxwell, Keye Luke.
Scene of the Crime (1949)
Investigating the murder of a fellow detective, Mike Conovan (Van Johnson) discovers that his colleague was secretly involved with a bookie. This clue plunges the determined copper into an even more crooked caper involving the assault of bookmakers all over town, an all-consuming case that eventually crazes Conovan’s wife (Arlene Dahl). Just the facts: this crackling noir co-stars Gloria DeHaven, Jerome Cowan.
After taking a potshot at tomcatting boyfriend Cesar Romero–and clipping the local judge where he sits–hell-raising saloon girl Betty Grable flees for the next town and starts posing as a prim schoolmarm. When rich local Rudy Vallee comes a’-courtin’, can she land him before her past catches up with her? Preston Sturges’ last American film co-stars Olga San Juan, Hugh Herbert, El Brendel.
The Bishop’s Wife (1947)
A Movies Unlimited favorite, this delightful holiday comedy stars Cary Grant as Dudley, a suave angel sent to Earth to come to the aid of young bishop Henry Brougham (David Niven). But is Dudley there to help Henry raise money for the construction of a new cathedral or to smooth over the clergyman’s relationship with his loving, but neglected, wife Julia (Loretta Young)? Monty Woolley, James Gleason also star.
The Fan (1949)
In Victorian London, a young noblewoman (Jeanne Crain) is mortified and hurt by the undue attention that her husband (Richard Greene) is paying to an older, society-hopping lady of affairs (Madeleine Carroll), and the caddish peer (George Sanders) who’s carried a torch for her sees an opening. Otto Preminger’s elegant take on Oscar Wilde’s “Lady Windermere’s Fan” also stars Martita Hunt.
This Land Is Mine (1943)
When occupying Nazi forces overtook his French village, no one was surprised by the meek acquiescence of mild-mannered schoolteacher Charles Laughton. When mistakenly implicated in a Resistance attack, however, the passive professor shows a remarkable reservoir of moral courage. Stirring wartime drama co-stars Maureen O’Hara, George Sanders, Walter Slezak, Una O’Connor; Jean Renoir directs from Dudley Nichols’s script.