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

Friday, September 19, 2008


MISS GRANT TAKES RICHMOND (1949). Director: Lloyd Bacon.
Ellen Grant (Lucille Ball) is the worst student in secretarial school but she's chosen for employment by Dick Richmond (William Holden) because he wants somebody dumb to work in his office. You see, Richmond's real estate business is just a front for his bookie operation. However, Ellen doesn't cotton to this and before long has embroiled Richmond and his pals in a low-cost housing enterprise and manages to stymie Richmond at every turn -- not as dopey as he thought. Lucy is great in this movie -- the scene with her taking a typing test is very funny -- but the movie is essentially a one-joke idea that has amusing lines and moments but never quite becomes the laugh-out-loud-fest you were hoping for. This would have worked better as a half hour or hour-long TV show. Ball exhibits some of the mannerisms she would later employ in her classic show I Love Lucy. She and Holden make a good team, but this is still a disappointment.
Verdict: Watch "Lucy Meets a Movie Star" (Holden) instead. **1/2.

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