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Better than I expected
on May 4, 2013
In Pennsylvania at the turn of the 20th century, a businessman (Clifton Webb) has successfully kept his two marriages and two families (with a total of 17 children) separate and a secret from each other. But when his Philadelphia son (Ray Stricklyn) unexpectedly visits the Harrisburg family looking for his father, the secret comes out and threatens to prevent the marriage of his daughter (Jill St. John) to the minister's (Larry Gates) son (Ron Ely, TV's TARZAN). Based on the play by Liam O'Brien, this wasn't quite the wholesome CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN knock off I was expecting. Although in the end it espouses traditional societal family values, it's a look at a so called unconventional "free thinker" and non-conformist who gets hoisted on his own petard with some laugh out loud moments. Webb, as expected, is able to deliver a quip with a razor like delivery but Dorothy McGuire as the first wife proves a feisty opponent. Directed by Henry Levin (JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH). With Charles Coburn (as Webb's father although he's only 12 years older), Dorothy Stickney, David Nelson (TV's OZZIE AND HARRIET), Larry Gates, Richard Deacon, Doro Merande and Joan Freeman.
The Fox MOD DVDr is a decent wide screen (2.35) transfer although not anamorphic.