Peter Joshua: Do we know each other?
Regina Lampert: Why, do you think we’re going to?
Peter Joshua: I don’t know — how would I know?
Regina Lampert: Because I already know an awful lot of people. Until one of them dies I couldn’t possibly meet anyone else.
Peter Joshua: Hmm, well if anyone goes on the critical list, let me know.
This was a hard year for me to pick just one film to talk about. Like 1939 before it, so many great films were up for Hollywood’s top prize in 1940. I decided to go with The Philadelphia Story, however, because I saw it on the big screen a few weeks ago and I fell in love with it even more than I already had been. It’s so perfectly written, acted, directed, paced, shot, everything. Truly one of the greatest films of Hollywood’s Golden Era – or ever, really. The film was nominated for six Academy Awards, winning two: Best Screenplay (won), Best Supporting Actress Ruth Hussey, Best Actress Katharine Hepburn, Best Actor Jimmy Stewart (won), Best Director and Best Picture. The other films nominated for Best Picture that year were: All This, and Heaven Too, Foreign Correspondent, The Grapes of Wrath, The Great Dictator, Kitty Folye, The Long Voyage Home, Our Town and winner Rebecca.
Aunt Elizabeth: Well who are you?
David Huxley: I don’t know. I’m not quite myself today.
Aunt Elizabeth: Well, you look perfectly idiotic in those clothes.
David Huxley: These aren’t my clothes.
Aunt Elizabeth: Well, where are your clothes?
David Huxley: I’ve lost my clothes!
Aunt Elizabeth: But why are you wearing *these* clothes?
David Huxley: Because I just went gay all of a sudden!
Aunt Elizabeth: Now see here young man, stop this nonsense. What are you doing?
David Huxley: I’m sitting in the middle of 42nd Street waiting for a bus.
A lot of quality classic films that revolve around Christmas unfairly get overlooked as simply a seasonal film, worth pulling out in December only. This is something I hate to see, because a lot of these classic films are such wonderful, timeless films that deserve much more attention than they often receive. Case in point: The Bishop’s Wife. At the time of its release it was nominated for multiple Oscars and widely revered, now it’s mostly only talked about at Christmastime. I suppose by writing about it in December, I’m doing exactly the same thing. Oh well. I love this film. For the longest time it was my favorite Cary Grant film (it’s still in my Top 5) and is endlessly watchable. Like I said earlier, it was nominated for five Academy Awards, winning one: Best Sound (won), Best Score, Best Film Editing and Best Picture. It was up against Crossfire, Great Expectations, Miracle on 34th Street (another Christmas-themed film) and winner Gentleman’s Agreement.