Father Goose (1964)

Walter Christopher Eckland, played by Cary Grant, is a vagrant who is living on a beach. During WWII, he is persuaded by the British Authorities to spy on the planes passing on the island. Reluctantly, he goes about his job. Commander Frank Houghton being an old friend of Mr. Eckland, it was a matter of obligation to be deserted on an island and spy.

During his stay on the island, he encounters a school teacher Catherine Freneau, played by Leslie Caron, stranded on the island and few children. They have managed to escape from the Japanese and thus seek shelter by taking Mr. Eckland’s help.

Mr. Eckland, as a result of a lady and kids, finds himself to be out of the house and finds shelter in his boat, which is semi-damaged.

The story involves a series of funny incidents between Mr. Eckland and Catherine over many issues. With time, they get each other’s perspective and start appreciating. Also, a change of attitude towards children is seen in Mr. Eckland as he takes up Catherine and the children’s responsibility.

He builds his boat so that it could be used to escape when the Japanese invade the island. Catherine and Mr. Eckland fall in love with each other and get married to the minister playing the priest’s role and perform the rituals via a radio transmitter. Japanese airplanes strike the island right after the wedding ritual.

While they wait for the submarine from the Navy to arrive, the Japanese invade the island. Mr. Eckland manages to distract the Japanese and escape safely.

Released in 1964, Father Goose was a romantic comedy directed by Ralph Nelson. It was nominated for three Oscars and won one Oscar for Best Screenplay, Writing. Other categories include Best Sound and Best Film Editing.

Once Upon a Honeymoon (1942)

During the time of WWII, many American reporters were deputed in Europe to narrate the war. This is a story of an American radio reporter Pat ‘O’ Toole, played by Cary Grant, his various adventures across Europe while covering the war. American burlesque Katie ‘O’ Hara marries an Austrian millionaire Baron Von Luber for her social climbing. Pat sees this marriage as an opportunity to expose the alleged, suspected ties of Baron with the Nazis.

Pat is after a story as he follows Katie and Baron on their honeymoon across many European countries. One can see country after country falling under the Nazi regime penned by Baron’s involvement.

Pat falls in love with Katie. Upon realising her husband’s role with Nazis, she escapes from the Baron by faking her death. When the Nazi regime had strengthened its hold in Europe, Katie, owing to her patriotic obligations, decides to don the role of a spy and goes back to Baron.

The final scene exposes the foolishness of Baron and the Nazi regime when Pat, upon agreement with Baron, delivers a radio speech to the public quite contrary to what was agreed upon.

This movie represents the typical Cary Grant, playing his comic – serious, eligible bachelor roles. Pretty looking, Ginger Rogers does justice to her role with her range of facial expressions and demonstrates her acting skills.

Look out for most actors’ comic timing as this film turned out to be just an entertainer. Keeping the mood of the early 1940s in America, this movie turns out to be another way of looking at WWII from an American perspective.

Released in 1942, Leo McCarey directs this comical adventure nominated for Best Oscar for sound recording.