Wednesday, July 13, 2016

THE TROUBLE WITH HARRY - Alfred Hitchcock (1955)

Imagine a Disney movie directed by Alfred Hitchcock if you can, and you'll get a pretty good idea of how "The Trouble With Harry" comes off!

"The Trouble With Harry" is a dark comedy released in 1955! Alfred Hitchcock making a comedy like this is like The Three Stooges making a serious movie, it just doesn't work that well, for me anyway, but Alfred had a different opinion! In his interview with Francois Truffaut, Alfred stated that this was one of his favourite movies, a story that he thought was very funny, and though I will admit that I did get a few laughs at the beginning, it's actually quite droll, but then what else would you expect from the Master of Macabre! Alfred also said that he thought the movie was one big understatement, but that unto itself is an understatement!

 "The Trouble With Harry" is that he is dead, but that is not the real problem! "The Trouble With Harry" is also that it's 99 minutes long, when 30 minutes would have been just fine!

The countryside in the state of Vermont where "The Trouble With Harry" was shot is absolutely stunning and beautiful.......

.......As long as you like to watch guys hiking around with shovels!

Here's a trio of film and TV icons that's hard to beat, but that's just not enough to save this film! 
John (Bachelor Father) Forsythe, Jerry (The Beaver) Mathers, and Shirley MacLaine in her first film ever!

"The Trouble With Harry" is that it seems to go on forever and ever. Of course, all Alfred Hitchcock completionists should watch it, but for the rest of you, your life would be more productive spending some time in a "Frenzy" with "The Birds," or some "Psycho!"


TC said...

I thought it started off well, and there were some very funny scenes near the beginning, but it just ran out of steam before it was even halfway through.

Similarly, with Weekend at Bernie's, I started to get bored during the trailer for it, never mind the movie itself. "OK, OK, I get it. The guy is dead and they are trying to prop up the body to make it look like he's still alive. Enough, already."

Maybe the premise is just better suited to a skit or a half-hour sitcom episode than a full-length movie. It made for a very funny episode of Fawlty Towers.

EEGAH!! said...

My sentiments exactly TC! I really did like about the first 15 minutes, but after that, sorry Alfred, but it's pretty much a snooze fest!!

Grant said...

I've only seen it once, but judging by that one time, in some ways I agree. And I'd like to be more sentimental about it, being Shirley MacLaine's first film.
One problem I have isn't actually the movie's fault at all. I feel like the only one who complains about this, but that idea of a comedy about people being stuck a dead body has really been milked by SITCOMS, that much more than other comedies. Even I like a few of them here and there, like that famous FAWLTY TOWERS episode, but not that many. So when you watch a story like this, you almost have to remind yourself that it came BEFORE all those sitcom episodes.

TC said...

Unfortunately, when something gets copied or parodied a lot, it's easy to forget that the original WAS original. Karloff as Frankenstein's monster, Lugosi as Dracula, Brando as the Godfather, John Wayne in Westerns, Humphrey Bogart in gangster movies, etc.

Kids watching an old Frankenstein or Dracula movie might even laugh, because it reminds them of Count Chocula or The Munsters.

Robert Heinlein once complained that later science fiction writers borrowed so many ideas from E.E. "Doc" Smith that younger readers would think that Smith's stuff was full of cliches. He pointed out that the concepts were new when Smith wrote his space operas.

Some people might even think that Daredevil and the X-Men borrowed from the Ninja Turtles, or that the Fantastic Four was based on The Incredibles, when it was really more like the other way around.

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