24 January 2019 | bkoganbing
Bellboy gets around
This charming fantasy got a lucky break when Mickey Rooney got drafted and
couldn't do Her Highness And The Bellboy. I don't think the film would have
worked as well with him as it does with Robert Walker in half of the title role.
The other half belongs to Hedy Lamarr as a visiting princess from some Ruritanian country in Eastern Europe. She's staying at the swank hotel where
Walker is employed as a bellboy. One afternoon she decides to go out incognito and runs into Walker doing his dogwalking thing for some of the
guests. They hit it off.
In one of those Hollywood coincidences Walker just happens to know newspaper columnist Warner Anderson with whom Lamarr had some history
back in the old country before her family got wind of it. Walker also has some
involvement with crippled June Allyson from the neighborhood.
On these plot premises a nice romantic tale is spun and these players along
with others who support them. Outstanding in the supporting cast is Rags
Ragland as Walker's good natured lunkhead friend.
My big criticism here is that June Allyson might have gone overboard with the
sweet innocence. But that's how MGM cast her back in the day.
It also had to have been taken for granted that this was set in the immediate
past before World War II. There's nary a mention of it in this film that came
out in 1945.
Still after over 70 years the film retains a nice sheen of innocence that is