The Big Hangover (1950)

NORMAN KRASNA

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB

USA, 1950.  Screenplay by Norman Krasna.  Cinematography by .  Produced by Norman Krasna.  Music by .  Production Design by , .  Costume Design by Helen Rose.  Film Editing by .

is a law student who has been selected to work at a prestigious law firm thanks to his being the top of his class. He barely sniffs a drink at a firm party and gets ragingly drunk, inspiring the curiosity of amateur psychologist Elizabeth Taylor, who is also the boss’s daughter. Johnson reveals that he has a severe allergy to alcohol thanks to having hidden a number of days in a wine cellar during the war. She resolves to cure his problem, and how fifties is it that a doctor’s daughter wants to help a man who can’t drink alcohol; call it Country Club Morality if you will. He finds himself in a moral conundrum when a public defender (a wonderful ) asks his firm to help the situation of a doctor who has been evicted from his apartment which is owned by one of the firm’s clients. A strange combination of elements makes for a bizarre film that is also weakly plotted, seemingly a comedy but featuring a lot of dark themes that it never quite resolves into its main flavor. Johnson and Taylor both give inane performances, likely the result of being thoroughly confused.

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