My Man Godfrey
Making a screwball comedy a lost art, and it’s unlikely to be rediscovered. I can’t imagine a young enthusiast of the sort of in-your-face, gross, hyperactive shit we get for “comedy” most of the time these days sitting still for a movie like this, where everything is wit and dialogue, with never a pratfall nor fart joke. It’s their loss, believe me. William Powell is actually the scion of a Boston Brahmin family, but through a totally unbelievable set of circumstances, takes a job as a butler in the house of a Park Avenue family. Carol Lombard is the younger daughter, a girl so ditsy she would horrify the standard dumb blonde, her mother is even sillier than her, the older, darker sister is a scheming bitch, and the great, gravel-voiced Eugene Palette is the down-to-earth father who is totally out of place in these surroundings. It is all great fun, one of the classic screwballs. Oh, if only they made more.