Dream Wife

Dream Wife

Director: Sidney Sheldon, Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Walter Pidgeon

Cast: Sidney Sheldon, Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Walter Pidgeon

     
 
Clemson Reade (Cary Grant) is the kind of man who wants to marry an old-fashioned girl, one who will stay home and take care of her husband. However, he's fallen in love with Priscilla "Effie" Effington (Deborah Kerr), who has an exciting career with the State Department that she has no intention of giving up. Clemson has the poor timing of proposing marriage to Effie

Overview

Clemson Reade (Cary Grant) is the kind of man who wants to marry an old-fashioned girl, one who will stay home and take care of her husband. However, he's fallen in love with Priscilla "Effie" Effington (Deborah Kerr), who has an exciting career with the State Department that she has no intention of giving up. Clemson has the poor timing of proposing marriage to Effie just as she's in the middle of trying to resolve a major political crisis with the Middle Eastern nation of Bukistan; the United States wants to stay on Bukistan's good side, thanks to their plentiful reserves of oil. Tired of waiting for Effie, Clemson decides that he needs to find a potential bride who will follow his lead instead of her own, and he soon meets Princess Tarji (Betta Saint John), daughter of the King of Bukistan, who has spent her life learning to faithfully serve her man. Clemson half-seriously sends a telegram proposing marriage to Tarji, which touches off a political tempest in a teapot when Tarji responds by visiting the United States. The State Department decides that someone should look after Tarji while she's in America, and who should be given the assignment but Effie; to Clemson's chagrin, Effie uses her time with Tarji to enlighten her about the more liberated status of women in the West. By the way, don't bother looking for Bukistan in your atlas, the country doesn't really exist.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Dream Wife is hardly a dream movie. Indeed, it can be argued that any romance-based comedy in which Cary Grant gives a poor performance has something seriously wrong with it. Grant certainly had been in this type of film before (and would be again), but most other times he had the benefit of a sturdy script and good direction. Both are woefully lacking in Wife, which has a premise that was growing tired in 1953 and is positively wearying today. The bickering between Grant and co-star Deborah Kerr is irritating, and Grant's character in particular comes off as spoiled and obnoxious -- even with Grant's natural charm. The dialogue is weak when it's not inane, and very few of the set-ups have any pay off. As director, Sidney Sheldon is hopelessly at sea, unsure of what tone to set, how to handle his actors and at times even where the proper focus of a scene should be. Without a seasoned hand at the helm, Grant overplays in a way that is quite unusual for this normally excellent farceur. Kerr does somewhat better (Although she's far from her best), and there is a certain chemistry between them -- but it keeps getting shoved aside for their senseless quarrel. Walter Pidgeon has some good moments, and there are a few scattered laughs here and there. Helen Rose's costumes are quite marvelous (although they cry out for color), and there's some nice lensing. But for the most part, Dream Wife has little to recommend it.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/23/2009
UPC:
0883316125311
Original Release:
1953
Rating:
NR
Source:
Warner Archives
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Time:
1:39:00
Sales rank:
27,456

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Cary Grant Clemson Reade
Deborah Kerr Priscilla "Effie" Effington
Walter Pidgeon Walter McBride
Betta St. John Tarji
Eduard Franz Khan
Buddy Baer Vizier
Don Randolph Ali
Bruce Bennett Charlie Elkwood
Richard Anderson Henry Malvine
Dan Tobin Mr. Brown
Movita Rima
Gloria Holden Mrs. Landwell
June Clayworth Mrs. Elkwood
Dean Miller George
Steve Forrest Louis
Jonathan Cott Marine
Patricia Tiernan Pat
John Alvin Actor
Jean Andren Bit
Dan Barton Sailor
Faire Binney Mrs. Parker
Gail Bonney "Mommy"
Marie Brown Miss Temple
Steve Carruthers Actor
Edward Cassidy Customs Official
Jack Chefe Captain
Donald Dillaway Actor
Kathleen Freeman Chambermaid
Jack George Clarence
Bernie Gozier Actor
Dabbs Greer Elevator Boy
William Hamel Reporter
Aram Katcher Bukistanian/Messenger
Hassan Khayyam Bukistanian Priest
Mary Lawrence Mrs. Malvine
Marjorie Liszt Woman Cab Driver
Alphonse Martell Headwaiter
William McCormick Actor
Bert Moorhouse Attlow
Jimmy Moss Small Boy
Virginia Mullen Annie
Forbes Murray Actor
Robert Nichols Elevator Boy
Rudy Rama Servant
Dick Rich Delivery Man
Vernon Rich McBride's Assistant
Gordon Richards Sir Cecil
Kay Riehl Woman
Perry Sheehan Evelyn the Receptionist
Harry Stanton Actor
Charles Sullivan Truck Driver
William Vedder Old Man
Gayne Whitman Men at Airport
Dorothy Kennedy Actor
Allen O'Locklin Clerk
Beryl McCutcheon Actor
Les Tremayne Ken Landwell
Maria [Movita] Castaneda Rima
Lillian Culver Woman at Airport
Jim Cronin Actor

Technical Credits
Sidney Sheldon Director,Screenwriter
Harbert Baker Screenwriter
Daniel B. Cathcart Art Director
Cedric Gibbons Art Director
Arnold A. Gillespie Special Effects
Milton Krasner Cinematographer
Alfred Lewis Levitt Original Story,Screenwriter
Herschel McCoy Costumes/Costume Designer
Warren Newcombe Special Effects
Helen Rose Costumes/Costume Designer
Conrad Salinger Score Composer
Dore Schary Producer
Douglas Shearer Sound/Sound Designer
Jamshid Sheibani Songwriter
Alfred E. Spencer Set Decoration/Design
William J. Tuttle Makeup
George White Editor
Edwin B. Willis Set Decoration/Design
Charles Wolcott Songwriter

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