Thursday, July 4, 2019

Thursday Movie Picks #260: Parenthood

This being Thursday, it's time for another edition of Thursday Movie Picks, the blogathon run by Wandering Through the Shelves. This week's theme is Parenthood. There are lots of movies where the characters have children, although I assume for this week that the theme wants to pick movies where the main characters' having children, or becoming parents, is the main part of the plot. With that in mind, I was even able to come up with a theme-within-a-theme:

For Heaven's Sake (1950). Gigi Perreau plays an angel who has not yet been born. She's found the couple she just knows she wants to have as her parents: Broadway writer Bob Cummings and actress Joan Bennett. However, their marriage is at the point it could break up, and that would scupper any idea of Perreau becoming a child in this family. It's up to angels Clifton Webb and Edmund Gwenn to save the day.

Cheaper by the Dozen (1950). Clifton Webb plays Frank Gilbreth, an efficiency expert married to Lillian (Myrna Loy). He employs his theories of efficiency on his 12 children circa 1920 (the eldest being played by Jeanne Crain), which sometimes has unexpected results for the kids. The movie was popular enough to spawn a sequel, Belles on their Toes, although Webb's character dies at the end of the first movie so he's not around for this one.

The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker (1959). Clifton Webb, who was pushing 70 by this time, plays a man in circa-1900 Pennsylvania who is not only a bigamist, but who has 17 children by his two wives! The two families are in different cities, with Webb traveling on "business" to keep the secret going. Eventually, a son from one mother needs to find Dad in an emergency, and finds the other family. Charles Coburn, who was only 12 years older than Webb, plays Webb's father.


Brittani Burnham said...

I haven't seen any of your picks but I did see the Cheaper By the Dozen remake. I'm guessing the original was better.

Birgit said...

I love Clifton Webb and wished he would have done a musical since he was a great ballroom dancer back in the day. The only one I saw and almost chose was Cheaper By The Dozen. This stars another favourite of mine, Jeanne Crain who should be better known today..oh well. I’d love to see that last film..sounds like a hoot.