Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
USA, 1942. Rene Clair Productions, Cinema Guild Productions, Paramount Pictures. Story completion by Norman Matson, Screenplay by Robert Pirosh, Marc Connelly, based on a story by Thorne Smith. Cinematography by Ted Tetzlaff. Produced by Rene Clair. Music by Roy Webb. Production Design by Hans Dreier, Ernst Fegte. Costume Design by Edith Head. Film Editing by Eda Warren. Academy Awards 1942.
Veronica Lake and Fredric March headline this delightful, frothy comedy that was later the inspiration for Bewitched. After Lake and her father are burned for sorcery following March’s accusations during the Salem witch trials (which in reality never featured burnings, only hangings), the two nefarious personalities return hundreds of years later to wreak havoc on their accuser’s descendant (also March). Lake has every intention of getting in the way of his wedding to Susan Hayward, but there’s a wrench thrown in the works when she accidentally falls in love with him and decides to leave behind her wicked ways. The plotting is too random to make for a fully satisfying comedy, it’s a short distraction that makes very little impression thanks to a light but not delicate touch, but it is enjoyable. March and Lake were famously at odds during production, and their lack of chemistry could possibly be the result of their famous enmity, though I can’t say that he was much of a lover in anything else he ever did.