Search This Blog

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Parent Trap (1961)

At a summer camp in the mountains, a girl from Boston (Hayley Mills) meets a girl (also Hayley Mills) from California and they're astonished at how much they look like each other. When they discover they share the same birthdate, they begin to piece together that they were twins who were separated as infants when their parents divorced. They switch identities so each can meet the parent they never knew. Has anyone who saw this film in their adolescence ever forgotten it or outgrown it? It has an overwhelming pull that goes beyond mere nostalgia. Based on the German book DAS DOPPETTE LOTTCHEN by Erich Kastner, director David Swift (HOW TO SUCCEED IN BUSINESS WITHOUT REALLY TRYING), who also did the screenplay, has crafted a charming fable that taps into the fantasies of children of divorce. Despite a wonky American accent, Mills does a credible job in differentiating the contrasting twins, one a tomboy and the other a perfect young lady. As the divorced parents, Maureen O'Hara (looking gorgeous) and Brian Keith make for an attractive couple (they did Peckinpah's DEADLY COMPANIONS the same year) and Joanna Barnes makes for a marvelous golddigger, her "fish out of water" camping trip scenes are hilarious. Remade in 1998 with Lindsay Lohan as the twins. Also in the cast: Leo G. Carroll, Charles Ruggles, Una Merkel, Cathleen Nesbitt, Ruth McDevitt, Linda Watkins and Nancy Kulp.

No comments:

Post a Comment