Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

Father Goose


For some reason Cary Grant thought it would be a fun change of pace to play a sloppy, disreputable alcoholic in his next-to-last picture. Not one of his better ideas. There’s just no way you can make Cary Grant look disreputable. This is set in the early days of the war in the Pacific, and he is dragooned into being a lookout on a remote little island, calling in Jap sightings to Trevor Howard back in Australia. Enter Leslie Caron as a pain-in-the-ass Frenchwoman, and her seven pain-in-the-ass young girl charges, including one who bites him at every opportunity. Man, if she bit me, she would have lost those teeth so fast …

Naturally they are at loggerheads from the start, as she moves in on him and takes it for granted that she can do exactly as she pleases, and he must do exactly as she pleases, too. They clash and they clash and they clash … and suddenly they are getting married. Huh? Did I miss something? I mean, it could give you whiplash. There was not a single scene that made his proposal the least bit believable.

I’m a big Cary Grant fan, but this is a big, fat, goose egg. The funny thing is, I thought I remembered liking it quite a bit when it was new. But it’s possible I was so busy necking with my girlfriend in the balcony that I didn’t notice how bad it was.