Written November 29, 2008
I recently saw a midnight showing of Howard Hawk's luminous 1938 screwball comedy starring Katherine Hepburn and Cary Grant. The thing that kept zinging through my brain amidst the continuous howls of delight from a nearly packed theater: NOW THIS IS HOW TO DO FILM COMEDY! There is hardly a mis-step in this absolutely ridiculous romp that has Cary playing his absent-minded professor character to the hilt while wacky heiress Hepburn has him galloping mad through her Connecticut country-side estate desperately trying to retrieve a expensive dinosaur bone that was pilfered by a wiry Jack Russel terrier named George (actually the same dog of Asta fame from the Thin Man series) One absolutely hysterical scene builds exquisitely on top of another all the way to an uproarious conclusion that uses some of the finest character actor actors of the day including Charlie Ruggles, Fritz Feld, & Ward Bond. If you can manage a straight face during the dinner scene, have someone check your vitals!