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Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Big Hangover (1950)

A young attorney (Van Johnson) has a serious allergic reaction to alcohol. That about sums up this anemic comedy in a nutshell. It's a one joke pony and not a very funny joke at that. We're expected to laugh at Johnson embarrassing himself when he talks to hat racks or hears his dog talking to him while under the influence. Worse than that, we're expected to laugh when his mean spirited colleagues intentionally put brandy in his soup just to see him get drunk and make a fool of himself! If there was some wit to the proceedings perhaps it wouldn't seem so banal. Buried in his wan laugh fest, there's a far more interesting subplot involving racial discrimination when a Chinese doctor (Philip Ahn) attempts to move in to a "Caucasian only" apartment complex and Johnson's law firm plots legal machinations to keep him out. Written and directed by Norman Krasna (WHITE CHRISTMAS). Co-starring a lovely Elizabeth Taylor as Johnson's love interest, an amateur psychologist who attempts to cure him. With Leon Ames, Rosemary DeCamp, Gene Lockhart, Edgar Buchanan and Selena Royle.

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