Clifton Webb 3-Film Collection DVD SetCategory: Blu-ray's and DVD's
Clifton Webb starred in some of the most memorable films of the mid-20th century. He solidified his place in Hollywood history with roles in “Laura”, “Three Coins in the Fountain”, and “Cheaper by the Dozen”. He was also the loveable Mr. Belvedere in “Mr. Belvedere Goes to College” and “Mr. Belvedere Rings the Bell”. Three fun and fancy films now combine in a 20th Century Fox Cinema Archives collection: “The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker”, “Holiday for Lovers”, and “Mr. Scoutmaster”.
The 1953 film “Mr. Scoutmaster” is a cute story of a TV star that is out of touch with the younger generation. He takes a position as a scoutmaster to discover what these Boy Scouts are interested in, thinking if he finds their likes and dislikes, he can change his show to appeal to them. He needs to get young viewers to sell the cereal that is sponsoring his show. But these little guys are no angels and he has his hands full with their antics. Edmund Gwenn (the loveable Santa in the 1947 film “Miracle on 34th Street) costars. This is the only black and white movie in the set. There is a cute storyline about a little scout played by George Winslow, aka “Foghorn” due to his low, raspy voice. Viewers might recall him in the film “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes”.
In the 1959 film “The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker”, Webb plays a man leading a dual life with two families. What happens when his secret is revealed? Dorothy McGuire, Jill St. John, and Charles Coburn costar in this story of a man who prides himself on being forward-thinking and heading up the Darwinian society while teaching his children to be free thinkers.
Unbeknownst to his family in Harrisburg, PA, he has another family in Philadelphia. He has 17 children between his two households. How does he get away with this? He spends every other month in Philly and the other months in Harrisburg. When his oldest daughter (the one in Harrisburg) decides to marry her minister boyfriend in a week, he returns to his first family for the joyous event. Unfortunately, his oldest son from his Philadelphia family comes to Harrisburg to warn him the sheriff is on his trail. No, he is not in trouble for being a bigamist, because no one knows about that, but he is in trouble for his Darwinian book. Well, you guessed it. When the two families meet the cat is out of the bag. Then everything gets confusing. What do his wife and children think?
“Holiday for Lovers” also came out in 1959. Webb plays a father who takes his family to South America after his oldest daughter stays on at the end of a school trip. Just what is going on down there? That is what Robert Dean (Webb) and his wife (Jane Wyman) intend on finding out. A fun cast adds to the comedy: Jill St. John, Carol Linley, and Paul Henreid.
Once he gets to South America with his wife and younger daughter, they are faced with the situation that his daughter (St. John) is in love with someone in Brazil. But who? And she also has the chance to stay on for a year to study art. In the meantime, the younger daughter (Linley) meets a man during a short refueling stop. After only an hour they are in love and he follows her back to the city and proposes.
Needless to say, this is a whacky family and an even whackier situation. Nevertheless, the acting is fun and the movie moves along with some entertaining situations and musical accompaniments.
There are no bonus features on any of the discs, and yes, they are all dated stories. The entertaining parts about them are the far-fetched situations in which Clifton Webb’s characters find themselves, and the heartening performances by this actor. At times his character is not a likeable man, however Webb brings an endearing factor to every man he portrays.
About the Author
Francine Brokaw has been covering all aspects of the entertainment business for over 20 years. She also writes about technology and has been a travel writer for the past 15 years. She has been published in national and international newspapers and magazines as well as Internet websites. She has written her own book, Beyond the Red Carpet The World of Entertainment Journalists, from Sourced Media Books.
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