Once a week on Friday, Uncle Bardie celebrates the creativity in others by shining a Spotlight on a movie, a song or a creator. This week’s Spotlight Movie is one for Halloween, “Arsenic & Old Lace” (1944):
Cary Grant meant to be here to tell you about Frank Capra’s “Arsenic and Old Lace”. But, as you can see, he’s all tied up. So he’s left it to me.
Seems that there were some strange events going on at the Brewster house. You see it all started when Mortimer Brewster (Cary Grant) showed up to let his aunts, Abby Brewster (Josephine Hull) and her sister Martha (Jean Adair), know he was getting married. To the daughter of their next door neighbor, Elaine Harper (Priscilla Lane), of all people.
And to think he had the bad fortune to find out about the aunts and their particular cure for loneliness. Psst. It’s elderberry wine. If that wasn’t enough, his uncle, Teddy Roosevelt (John Alexander) , has a number of yellow fever victims in the basement. He’s convinced they’ve been working on the Panama Canal.
Well, before you can count the yellow fever victims, Dr. Einstein (Peter Lorre) showed up to do a facelift on Boris Karloff (Raymond Massey). Before you know it, the Brewster place was looking like Grand Central Station with all the people passing through. They include the Judge, the Psychiatrist and the police led by the cop on the beat (Jack Carson).
But no worries. Dr. Einstein went off to treat another patient. Boris Karloff returned to Hollywood (or some such similar place). The sisters and Teddy are off vacationing at Happy Vale Rest Home. Teddy’s been assured that “Happy Vale is full of staircases.” So there’ll be plenty of room for him to lead a charge up San Juan Hill.
And Mortimer? Rumor has it that he and his new bride have taken a barrel down Niagara Falls.