vlogrop: Canada Demands Recount


They don't make movies like they used to. This is objectively true in the sense that they use different equipment now to shoot and edit the movies. But, also true by virtue of the fact that there is no more Production Code and that it used to be that dialogue and insinuation were much more heavily required. And, a lot more was asked of actors than good looks and the ability to read. More's the pity, too, since some movies made during the era of Code are exceptional not in spite of but because of the tight strictures.

Take The Miracle of Morgan's Creek, for instance. A girl feels it's her patriotic duty to wish the troops farewell as they head off to WWII. In the course of the evening, she gets drunk (though, the picture claims she's woozy from hitting her head during a particularly acrobatic dance move) and ends up getting married. Problem is, she can't remember to whom ("It had a z," she tells her sister when asked the name of her husband, now off in Europe). Not knowing anything about her husband becomes slightly more of a problem a few weeks later when Trudy discovers she's going to have a baby. For an idea of how careful and crafty this film is never once does it use the word pregnant. In fact, "I'm going to have a baby" is said only once, quite late in the film, and the rest is all suggestion and double entendre. Trudy decides to get Norval, the local army reject and all around much too nice guy, to propose to her.

What we have here is Knocked Up, circa 1944. What's more, Miracle was made in an era when you couldn't even say virgin on screen. Or girdle. Or show a birth, even in silhouette. Or exhibit "lustful kissing". Take that, directors who think you need violence, sex, swearwords and/or the mocking of policemen and clergy to make a good film!

To give more of the plot away would ruin the real treat watching this film is. Seriously, it's hilarious. It's a great combination of fast talking, visual gags and slapstick humor. The scene of the newspapers where the Russian one spells out СРАЗУ or the Chinese one comes in backwards the first time is one of the best lampoonings of film conventions I've seen in a long, long time. Basically, this is one of my new favorite movies, but then I love Preston Sturges, so it wasn't a very hard sell. It's too bad he had studio troubles so soon into his directing career.In essence, Preston Sturges is a genius. Check him out as his best here or as the director of The Lady Eve or Sullivan's Travels. I defy you to be disappointed in his work.


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