thatcow

"Where'd you steal that hair? Off a lilac bush?"

Again, another older movie that gets right what the modern sitcom screws up. Again, the reason has to do with a focus on character than simply trying to pump up the outrageousness of the situation.

The Mating Season begins with Ellen McNulty losing her hamburger joint due to unpaid bills. She packs up to live with her son Val, but on arrival discovers he is getting married that day, to the daughter of an ambassador, and so she makes herself scarce before explaining what's happened, not wanting to be an imposition on the newlyweds. Val is already a little embarrassed by his somewhat low-class roots, and keeps the details sketchy with his new family, all the while spending more than even his well-paying job can sustain. When Val's bride Maggy mistakes Ellen for a cook, Ellen goes along, and eventually finagles herself into the position fulltime, but keeping that veil of secrecy with her daughter-in-law. Things are settling in fine until Maggy's mother shows up to stay, and the tensions of two mothers-in-law in the same apartment just can't lead to anything good.

The silly sensitivities of people are highlighted throughout - unspoken assumptions for the most part. We see such things time and time again, but they hardly ever seem fresh, except in the seemingly more innocent times in these older films. Maybe I'm just getting hooked on TCM, but so many of these are so much better than what comes out today.

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