Over 21

Overview

Based on a play by Ruth Gordon, Over 21 represents the felicitous teaming of two middle-aged but attractive film favorites. Alexander Knox plays newspaper editor Max Wharton, who despite his age, patriotically signs up for Officer Candidate School. The humor arises from the fact that Wharton has trouble adjusting to the rigors of Army life, not to mention the good-natured competition of much-younger OCS aspirants. Meanwhile, Wharton's wife Paula Irene Dunne does her best to accommodate her husband's peripatetic ...
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Overview

Based on a play by Ruth Gordon, Over 21 represents the felicitous teaming of two middle-aged but attractive film favorites. Alexander Knox plays newspaper editor Max Wharton, who despite his age, patriotically signs up for Officer Candidate School. The humor arises from the fact that Wharton has trouble adjusting to the rigors of Army life, not to mention the good-natured competition of much-younger OCS aspirants. Meanwhile, Wharton's wife Paula Irene Dunne does her best to accommodate her husband's peripatetic military existence, and to ward off Wharton's boss Robert Gow Charles Coburn, who insists that Max give up this "nonsense" and return to civilian life. Sharply directed and cleverly cast, Over 21 still delivers a full quota of laughs despite the dated quality of the storyline.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Over 21 is not a classic wartime comedy, but it does have the benefit of an expert trio of stars to give it a bit of brio. The creators have tampered somewhat with Ruth Gordon's play, but enough of the solid structure remains so that the basic story holds up, even if it starts to wear out its welcome a bit before the end. A late-in-the-game speech which uses a pie analogy to encourage an end to American isolationism is a bit jarring, but the speech itself is effective. Modern audiences, however, may find it and many other portions of the film somewhat dated and the mechanics of the piece a bit obvious in places. Fortunately, stars Irene Dunne, Alexander Knox, and Charles Coburn are on hand to smooth over the rough spots. Coburn could play grouchy and maintain his special charm and uses both qualities to very good advantage here. Knox handles his big speech with great skill and helps to hold together a number of scenes that would otherwise be rather bumpy. And Dunne is, as almost always, a sheer pleasure to be around. Her special magic is rather hard to define; one watches her entranced, but never quite sure of what she is doing to create that effect. Whatever it is, it works, and it's a prime reason that Over 21 works as well.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/16/2010
  • UPC: 043396359581
  • Original Release: 1945
  • Rating:

  • Source: Sony Pictures Home
  • Presentation: B&W
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 51,927

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Irene Dunne Paula Wharton
Alexander Knox Max Wharton
Charles Coburn Robert Gow
Jeff Donnell Jan Lupton
Loren Tindall Roy Lupton
Lee Patrick Mrs. Foley
Phil Brown Frank MacDougal
Cora Witherspoon Mrs. Gates
Charles Evans Col. Foley
Pierre Watkin Joel I. Nixon
Anne Loos Mrs. Dumbrowski
Nanette Parks Mrs. Clark
Adelle Roberts Mrs. Collins
Jean Stevens Mrs. Greenberg
Abigail Adams
Gladys Blake Girl
Lillian Bronson Secretary
George Bruggeman
George Carleton Hinkle
James Flavin Captain
Jo Gilbert Officer Candidate's Wife
Chuck Hamilton
Douglas Henderson
William Hudson Officer Candidate
Patricia Jackson
John James
Marilyn Johnson
Robert Emmett Keane Kennedy
Billy Lechner Little Boy
Charles Marsh Howell
Carole Mathews
Bob Meredith
Forbes Murray Meredity
Michael Owen
George Peters
Cosmo Sardo Barber
Dan Stowell Male Secretary
Robert B. Williams Taxi Driver
Technical Credits
Charles Vidor Director
Sidney Buchman Producer, Screenwriter
Louis Diage Set Decoration/Design
Stephen Goosson Art Director
Jean Louis Costumes/Costume Designer
Rudolph Maté Cinematographer
Otto Meyer Editor
Marlin Skiles Score Composer
Rudolph Sternad Art Director
Morris W. Stoloff Musical Direction/Supervision
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