Critic's Choice

Critic's Choice

Director: Don Weis Cast: Bob Hope, Lucille Ball, Marilyn Maxwell

DVD (Color / Wide Screen)

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Ira Levin wrote the stage comedy Critic's Choice as a good-natured retort to a comment made by critic Walter Kerr. In his essay How Not to Write a Play, Kerr noted that the worst possible scenario would involve a drama critic forced to review a play written by his wife (we should mention that Kerr's own wife was noted playwright Jean Kerr). Levin utilized this very scenario, and the result was a Broadway hit. Less successful artistically was the 1962 film version, though with Bob Hope and Lucille Ball as stars, the film couldn't help but clean up at the box office. Hope portrays theatrical critic Parker Ballantine, while Lucille Ball plays his wife Angela. Feeling "useless," Angela writes a play as a lark, then is amazed when it is optioned by a major producer. Parker does his best to get out of the responsibility of reviewing the play (which very well may be as bad as he thinks it is), but cannot escape the responsibility. Much of the verbal wit of the Levin original is sacrificed in favor of one-line quips; there is also an overabundance of gratuitous slapstick during a little-league game and the climactic "opening night" sequence. Still, Hope and Ball work together well as always.

Product Details

Release Date: 08/20/2019
UPC: 0883929690497
Original Release: 1962
Source: Warner Archives
Presentation: [Wide Screen, Color]
Sound: [Dolby Digital Mono]
Time: 1:40:00
Sales rank: 19,850

Special Features

Vintage comedy short Calling All Tars with Bob Hope; Oscar-Nominated Cartoon: Now Hear This; Theatrical trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Bob Hope Parker Ballantine
Lucille Ball Angela Ballantine
Marilyn Maxwell Ivy London
Rip Torn Dion Kapakos
Jesse Royce Landis Charlotte Orr
John Dehner S.P. Champlain
Jim Backus Dr. von Hagedom
Ricky Kelman John Ballantine
Dorothy Green Mrs. Champlain
Marie Windsor Sally Orr
Evan McCord Phil Yardley
Richard Deacon Harvey Rittenhouse
Joan Shawlee Marge Orr
Jerome Cowan Joe Rosenfield
Donald Losby Godfrey
Lurene Tuttle Mother
Emestine Wade Thelma
Stanley Adams Bartender

Technical Credits
Don Weis Director
Edward Carrere Art Director
George Duning Score Composer
Edith Head Costumes/Costume Designer
William L. Kuehl Set Decoration/Design
Charles B. Lang Cinematographer
Arthur Morton Musical Direction/Supervision
Frank P. Rosenberg Producer
Jack Sher Screenwriter
William H. Ziegler Editor

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Critic's Choice
1. Credits.
2. You Can't Always Tell.
3. Analysis Over Breakfast.
4. Idea For A Play.
5. Back In, Back Out.
6. Long-Shot Playwright.
7. Party Patter.
8. Writer At Work.
9. One Man's Opinion.
10. Father Figure.
11. Hot Dogs And Self-Respect.
12. Out Of Town.
13. Ivy's Report.
14. Inexhaustible.
15. Hatchet Man.
16. Speaking In Code.
17. Parker's Dream.
18. Sisters Three.
19. You Win.
20. Stop Telling Me What I Said.
21. Two For The Playpen.
22. Charge To The Theatre.
23. Balcony Brouhaha.
24. Reviews Are In.
25. On Angie's Team.
26. Showering Praise And Pain.

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