Monday, August 1, 2011

Movies You Might Have Missed Monday

John Wayne did a lot of westerns, gaining a huge and lasting fan base. This week’s movie features John Wayne but is not a western! It’s called Without Reservations, and it’s a romantic comedy from 1946.

Christopher Madden, played by Claudette Colbert (It Happened One Night), has written a best-selling novel about the future of romance and relationships, and she’s headed to Hollywood to collaborate with a producer to make it into a film. Just before boarding the train in New York, she finds out that her first pick for the hero, Cary Grant, is unavailable to play the part. She’s devastated and, while the train gets rolling, sets out to write a temper tantrum telegram to the producer. However, she stops short when across from her sit two marines heading to San Diego. One of them is Rusty Thomas, played by John Wayne, and he’s the spitting image of her hero pictured on the front of her book. She determines to talk him into the part. But as they start talking, and the subject of her book comes up because someone across the aisle is reading it, she discovers he disagrees with her philosophy on men and women. Discouraged, but still wanting him for the part, she conceals her identity and the three, Christopher Madden and the two marines, have a comical cross-country adventure.

Now, I’ve never been one of those girls who swoons at the sight of a man in uniform, but John Wayne wears one like no one else’s business. He’s so handsome and dapper and charming. He pulls off romantic one-liners without sounding whipped or corny. His manly persona made famous in all the westerns shines through in this clean-cut, military man role.

Claudette is cute as usual, showing off her brilliant comedic timing and wit. The supporting casts supports as it should, neither clouding nor distracting from the main performers. The second marine, Rusty’s friend Dink played by Don DeFore (T.V.s Ozzie & Harriet), is an adorable and likeable sidekick.

I like this movie for its sweet romance, frequent laughs, and for the opportunity to see John Wayne outside of his cowboy boots and hat.

Hope you’ll check it out!

Happy Movie Watching, Dry Ground friends!

(photo by