Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948)
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Anyone expecting a screwball comedy is going to be disappointed, but this is a fantastic satire.
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House stars Cary Grant making a bad investment to move his family out of a cramped New York apartment and into a country home, but everything from the sale to the rebuilding goes completely wrong, and I sort of have to include the resulting film in that description. It's okay, but there's too much dead air in the scenes for them to really fly, the satire about the upper middle class doesn't land, and Blandings just comes off as a macho idiot who doesn't listen to anyone and likes to play to expert (the scene at the covered bridge is perhaps the theme in a nutshell). At some point, the movie realizes it's essentially plotless - just vignettes where Blandings makes the wrong choice and bites his nails about money - and it tacks on a convenient advertising campaign problem. And from the looks of it, someone must have realized the movie wasn't very funny at the editing stage, because the voice-over from the friend of the family has much more fun playing with the story's core ironies. Myrna Loy, as Mrs. Blandings, comes out of it much better, and that scene where she described the colors she wants for her walls proves to me she should have dominated much more of the film's run time than she does.
The worker class saved the middle class.
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In 2 official lists
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This movie ranks #72 in AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs
This movie ranks #609 in Halliwell's Top 1000: The Ultimate Movie Countdown