Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
USA, 1947. Dore Schary Productions, Vanguard Films, RKO Radio Pictures. Screenplay by Allen Rivkin, Laura Kerr, based on the play by Juurakon Hulda by Hella Wuolijoki. Cinematography by Milton R. Krasner. Produced by Dore Schary. Music by Leigh Harline. Production Design by Albert S. D’Agostino, Feild M. Gray. Costume Design by Edith Head. Film Editing by Harry Marker.
Loretta Young is delightful in this curiously funny story about a Swedish farm girl who moves to the big city to become a nurse and ends up being a housemaid for a congressman (Joseph Cotten) and his mother (Ethel Barrymore). Young constantly inputs her intelligence into the political conversations of the dinner table until it culminates with a rally where she challenges the family’s top political candidate and unwittingly becomes one herself. Now she finds herself running for congress, but not before her opponent makes good use of an inconvenient secret of her past in order to smear her. This intelligently written film benefits from a marvelously rebellious ending: where girls are usually forced to give up their careers for marriage in movies, this girl decides she can have it all. Young deserved her Oscar, a rare choice for a comedy performance, but she’s just the beginning of the delights to be had here.
Academy Award: Best Actress (Loretta Young)
Nomination: Best Supporting Actor (Charles Bickford)