Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

DON'T TRUST YOUR HUSBAND aka AN INNOCENT AFFAIR

Madelaine Carroll and Fred MacMurray













DON'T TRUST YOUR HUSBAND (aka An Innocent Affair/1948). Director: Lloyd Bacon.

Advertising man Vincent Doane (Fred MacMurray) is trying to land an account which happens to be controlled by his still-amorous ex-fiancee, Margot Fraser (Louise Allbritton of Fired Wife). Vincent's wife, Paula (Madeleine Carroll), thinks he's spending all his evenings with a Mr. Fraser, but she suspects something's up. Vincent's sister, Eve (Rita Johnson of The Naughty Nineties), comes up with the dubious idea of testing her brother's love for her sister-in-law by seeing how jealous he gets if a paid actor pays too much attention to Paula on their anniversary. Clued in to the scheme, Vincent invites the man into his home and even asks him to take out his wife the next night! What nobody realizes is that the man in question is not the paid actor, but rather wealthy cigarette man Claude Kimball (Charles "Buddy" Rogers), who thinks the Doanes have a wonderfully carefree attitude. This all sounds rather cute, but it's almost by the numbers, with not enough real laughs -- although there are certainly amusing bits -- to make it stand out from the crowd. MacMurray is terrific, as you would expect, and the ladies are all good if not on his level. Alan Mowbray offers his customary fine performance as a man who pretends to be Margot's husband, and Anne Nagel has a small role as a receptionist. Rogers gets by on charm. Bacon also directed Crooner and many others.

Verdict: Cute, if formula, comedy. **1/2. 

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