Saturday, August 17, 2019

Is Your Honeymoon Really Necessary? (1953): A Mischievous Bedroom Farce That Falls Flat

Bonar Colleano share a drink with his new wife, Diana Decker.
Is Your Honeymoon Really Necessary? (1953) proves just how dumb a farce can be.  Farces depend on preposterous situations and this film presents a situation that couldn't be more preposterous.  A U. S. airman, Commander Laurie Vining (Bonar Colleano), is on a honeymoon with his new wife Gillian (Diana Decker) when he is visited by his former wife Candy (Diana Dors), who claims they're not divorced.  It turns out that Vining married Candy years earlier when he was first stationed in England.  According to Candy, the British government does not recognize the couple's divorce because the paperwork Vining filed in the United States is not applicable to a marriage authorized in England.  Vining must file a new suit in the British courts to divorce Candy.

It's a simple paperwork issue that can easily be resolved.  It is hard to believe that Gillian, who has been nothing but gentle and kind to her husband, would storm out over something like this.  But that is exactly what Vining fears will happen.  So, he does everything he can to keep his ex-wife out of sight and keep his accidental bigamy a secret.  What follows is what usually follows in a bedroom farce: lots of doors slamming, a woman hiding under a bed, and endless lies sputtered at a frantic pace.

Then, Vining's commanding officer astonishingly crashes the honeymoon, too.

Vinings' friend and lawyer Frank Betterton (David Tomlinson) shows up to help.  Saucy Candy enjoys teasing the sexually repressed Frank at every opportunity. 

The highlight of the film turns out to be Frank and Candy falling in love.

Candy is motivated to create this big fuss by slight bit of mischief and spite.  She tells Frank, "I only wanted to frighten Laurie a little."  It's a flimsy premise for a feature film.  It essentially means that viewers spend one hour and twenty minutes watching a bratty girl put a tack on a chair.

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