• TOM HENDY

FATHER GOOSE (1964)

It's fluff, silly box-office fodder but it's quite possibly one of the most charming films ever made; it should be treasured. 


In the pacific ocean, during World War II Walter Eckland (Cary Grant) is persuaded (or tricked) into living on an isolated island to spot enemy aircraft and unexpectedly finds himself responsible for a teacher (Leslie Carron) and a group of young female students.  Okay, this one is going to be more of a challenge to sell. This is just my opinion, I'm aware that this is probably not a great movie, it's been panned by critics, one of whom said "It's a shame that Grant ... should have logged this sentimental claptrap as his penultimate film", BUT....I just LOVE this film. I have such a soft spot for it, I grew up watching this with my Gran and I think it's an overlooked gem and should be cherished. Cary Grant is endlessly charismatic and I enjoy him in this slightly more 'grumpy old man' role. The chemistry with Leslie Carron is so entertaining. It's very funny. I've seen it countless times and yet I still laugh out loud. A couple of things I think this film achieves SO well is: I tend to hate kids in movies, often they annoy me but this film does the seemingly impossible task of having seven children yet creates individual personalities for all of them and even showcases them in short scenes to endear you to them so they are not annoying. The film juggles several plots, like the war-plot, the romance plot, the 'children' plot(s) whilst showcasing a lot of characters who all manage to have charismatic, endearing and individual personalities. Don't get me wrong, I'm aware this film is fluff and very silly but it's kinda great and I love it - don't judge me.

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