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

Thursday, May 12, 2016


Bob Cummings with the three smart girls.
THREE SMART GIRLS GROW UP (1939). Director: Henry Koster.

In this inferior sequel to Three Smart Girls, the "girls" are now young ladies with romantic problems. Their parents (Charles Winninger; Nella Walker) are back together and Joan (Nan Grey) is happily affianced to Richard (William Lundigan of Andy Hardy's Double Life). Unfortunately sister Kay (Helen Parrish) has fallen in love with Richard herself, a rather interesting situation that, unfortunately, never becomes entertainingly melodramatic. Sister Penny (Deanna Durbin) keeps throwing Harry Loren (Robert Cummings) in Kay's direction, to take her mind off Richard, but Harry rather rudely makes it clear that his interest is strictly in Penny. Durbin [It Started with Eve], the sole name to appear above the title, showing how her status had grown, gives a good performance, as does Winninger, and the rest are all more than competent.

Verdict: Pleasant if forgettable. **1/2.

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