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Cheaper by the Dozen (1950)
     

Cheaper by the Dozen (1950)

4.5 6
Director: Walter Lang

Cast: Clifton Webb, Jeanne Crain, Myrna Loy

 

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The true story of the Gilbreth Family -- a pair of married efficiency experts who raised a family of 12 children -- is brought to the screen with a light touch in this comedy drama, which has been given a simple presentation on DVD. Cheaper by the Dozen has been transferred to disc in the full-frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1. The English-language audio appears in

Overview

The true story of the Gilbreth Family -- a pair of married efficiency experts who raised a family of 12 children -- is brought to the screen with a light touch in this comedy drama, which has been given a simple presentation on DVD. Cheaper by the Dozen has been transferred to disc in the full-frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1. The English-language audio appears in Dolby Digital Mono. Bonus material includes a short vintage newsreel on awards won by the film, as well as its original theatrical trailer. Trailers for the sequel Belles on their Toes and the in-name-only 2003 remake also appear.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
This classic adaptation of the autobiographical novel written by real-life siblings Frank and Ernestine Gilbreth takes place at the turn of the 20th century. Clifton Webb, the starchy patrician who first achieved screen fame in Laura, plays the family's stern but loving patriarch. Myrna Loy, in a far cry from her spirited portrayals of Nora Charles in the Thin Man movies, plays the gentle and patient mother who presides over the occasionally unruly brood. Though it doesn't have a strong central plot, the movie is a series of comic vignettes that never loses steam. One highlight finds the father accompanying his dateless oldest daughter -- the radiantly beautiful Jeanne Crain -- to her high-school prom, where he becomes the hit of the evening. Another finds Webb shepherding the ailing younger children to the hospital, where he oversees a mass withdrawal of tonsils. Other moments are less rib-tickling and one in particular is heartbreakingly poignant. But the kids -- little scene-stealers, the lot of 'em -- are enjoyable, and the unusual pairing of Webb and Loy yields unexpectedly entertaining dividends. Directed with flair by journeyman Walter Lang, Cheaper by the Dozen depicts family life in a radically different way than the 2003 remake -- but it's every bit as engaging.
All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
A big hit in its time, and a favorite for many year after, Cheaper By the Dozen has lost a considerable amount of its appeal in more recent times. Simply put, while it has its charms and some considerable assets, Cheaper is dated. For some, this won't be much of a problem, but others will find it challenging to watch a man who is basically a dictator, who cares little for the opinions of others (while professing otherwise) and whose obsession with efficiency may strike some as a bit monomaniacal. Cheaper has some other problems, notably that it's basically just one long series of incidents and vignettes rather than a single cohesive story. However, it also has a warmth and charm about it, and many of the sequences do inspire genuine laughter. This is especially true of the "birth control lecture" sequence, which is just about perfect and which also benefits from a spot-on performance by Mildred Natwick. And whatever issues one may have with the father, there's no denying that he is played to the hilt by Clifton Webb. Myrna Loy plays another of her perfect wives to perfection, and Edgar Buchanan does well as the family doctor. Jeanne Crain is a bit stiff as the eldest daughter, though Barbara Bates as the next in live is quite good. Walter Lang's direction keeps things moving and is ultra-professional, if a bit impersonal.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/16/2004
UPC:
0024543103943
Original Release:
1950
Rating:
NR
Source:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
1
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Mono, Dolby Digital Stereo]
Time:
1:26:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; Theatrical Trailer ; Cheaper By The Dozen Wins Awards ; Belles On Their Toes Trailer ; Cheaper By The Dozen '03 Trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Clifton Webb Frank Bunker Gilbreth
Jeanne Crain Ann Gilbreth
Myrna Loy Lillian Gilbreth
Edgar Buchanan Dr. Burton
Barbara Bates Ernestine
Mildred Natwick Mrs. Mebane
Sara Allgood Mrs. Monahan
Anthony Sydes Fred Gilbreth
Roddy McCaskill Jack Gilbreth
Carol Nugent Lillie Gilbreth
Jimmy Hunt William Gilbreth
Teddy Driver Dan Gilbreth
Betty Barker Mary Gilbreth
Evelyn Varden School Principal
Frank Orth Mr. Higgins
Craig Hill Tom Black
Virginia Brissac Mrs. Benson
Walter S. Baldwin Jim Bracken
Bennie Bartlett Joe Scales
Sid Saylor Plumber
Ken Christy Mailman
Mary Field Music teacher
Patti Brady Martha Gilbreth
Betty Lynne Libby Lancaster
Norman Ollestad Frank Gilbreth, Jr.
Robert Arthur Actor

Technical Credits
Walter Lang Director
Cyril Mockridge Score Composer
Lionel Newman Musical Direction/Supervision
Leon Shamroy Cinematographer
Lamar Trotti Producer,Screenwriter
J. Watson Webb Editor

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Main Titles [1:32]
2. A True Story [1:22]
3. The Gilbreth Family Ritual [4:08]
4. Moving Day [5:27]
5. Family Council [1:13]
6. A New School [2:13]
7. Scientific Methods [4:12]
8. Tonsillectomies [4:45]
9. Music Lessons [2:26]
10. An Even Dozen [6:24]
11. A Dog [1:58]
12. A Good Citizen [6:40]
13. Summer at the Shore [2:44]
14. Anne Cuts Her Hair [1:17]
15. Anne Has a Date [2:56]
16. Dad Leaves for Europe [5:36]
17. Bad News [1:28]
18. Mom Takes Over [2:33]

Customer Reviews

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Cheaper by the Dozen (1950) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this movie is hilarious! it brings back the old-fashioned values and beliefs of 'yesteryear!'
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I saw this movie I knew right at the beginning that it would become one of my all-time favorites. It is charming and very funny. I am both tickled and charmed at Frank Bunker Gilbreth, the road hog. This movie is almost like the book that is also very charming.
Animalicious More than 1 year ago
Old movies-Just don't make 'em like they used to! Great story, even by today's standards.
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