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Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Never Say Die (1939)

A wealthy hypochondriac (Bob Hope) is trapped into marrying a much married gold digging widow (Gale Sondergaard) with a reputation of doing away with her husbands. When he's misdiagnosed as having only a few weeks to live, he hastily marries a Texas heiress (Martha Raye) to stop her from being forced to marry a titled Prince (Alan Mowbray) by her status seeking father (Paul Harvey). Based on the play by William H. Post and William Collier and directed by Elliott Nugent. I don't think Hope really blossomed as a film comic until the 1940s but this is one of his better vehicles from the 1930s. Martha Raye makes a great foil for him and the laughs are plentiful and there's a wonderful supporting cast of players to prop them up. Preston Sturges had a hand in the screenplay and there's a humorous tongue twisting bit that was perfected to better effect in THE COURT JESTER (1956). With Monty Woolley, Sig Ruman, Ernest Cossart, Hans Conreid and Albert Dekker.    

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