I Married a Witch (1942, Rene Clair)

Fun movie, but I made the mistake of reading the Guy Maddin article before watching. The movie itself could never live up to that article! French expatriate Clair directs Veronica Lake (the year after Sullivan’s Travels but looking five years sexier, err, older) as a witch who spends centuries imprisoned in a tree with warlock Daniel (Cecil Kellaway, entertainingly overdoing it), overseeing their curse upon the family line of mayoral candidate Fredric March (PTSD’d husband of Myrna Loy in The Best Years of Our Lives). Lightning strikes the tree, the tricksters escape, and she falls for March, deciding to ditch the warlock and break up his engagement to cold Susan Hayward, daughter of the newspaperman (Robert Warwick, studio boss in Sullivan’s Travels and a big star back in 1915) helping March get elected. Comedian Robert Benchley plays March’s buddy and professional auntie/grandma Elizabeth Patterson his housekeeper. Kind of a naughty movie. Not surprising that Preston Sturges was involved with this – he quit and had his credit removed.

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