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Monday, January 23, 2017

Easy Living (1949)

The star halfback (Victor Mature) of a New York football team discovers that he has a heart condition and it could be fatal if he continues to play professional football. But his social climbing wife (Lizabeth Scott) likes being married to a football hero and she's not ready to become Mrs. Nobody. Directed by Jacques Tourneur (CAT PEOPLE). I'm not a big fan of sports movies but the film focuses on the dark side of professional football, the politics and the money rather than the cheering crowds. Pauline Kael once referred to Jane Russell as a female Victor Mature and said that one would have to work hard to dislike them. They're not great actors (and they know it) but they're pros and so unpretentious in their "acting" that we don't really care. Which is a roundabout way of saying that Mature not so much gives a performance as takes space up on the screen and that's okay with me. He gives the movie what it needs and who can ask for more. Granted, Lizabeth Scott is playing a self centered bitch but I still think the film makers are rather cruel in her "comeuppance". With Lucille Ball as the team secretary secretly in love with Mature, Lloyd Nolan, Sonny Tufts, Jeff Donnell, Paul Stewart and Audrey Young (who would soon become Mrs. Billy Wilder) who sings the title song.

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