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  • The most interesting part of the movie was that you couldn't predict how it would come out. It has less of the dislike of American military men (overpaid, oversexed, and over here) than was actually felt by British men in uniform, as well as those on the homefront who weren't just out for fun with the soldiers, and I suspect it was written to ease tensions that were almost to the breaking point. When this was made there was no way of knowing how long the war would continue so I don't think it was written with postwar relations in mind. I do know that a great many Brits even today are very hostile to the American notion that America won the war and saved the free world. Compared to their contribution, we were "johnny come lately"s to both wars. This movie tells us it was a cooperative effort and we should appreciate each other's contributions.

    A touching aspect is the tie between the American who lost his father in WWI and the housekeeper who lost her husband in the same war.

    I enjoyed the election when the woman suggested maybe they should have tried having a woman stand for that position instead of a man. Here, here!

    There were short scenes of the worrying going on in the American homefront, to show families suffered in both countries. There was an American whose ancestor had come from that little town. To heavily underline that idea that we are very similar and can all get along was the American, flying a plane with a Brit, who married a Brit intending to bring her to the US and wished there were a bridge between the two countries--and the reaction wasn't that the fellow was a vile interloper stealing British women while their men were overseas. And finally a quotation on the screen if you hadn't gotten the drift from the rest of the movie. This should be titled Why Can't We Be Friends?

    I might have given this a 10 but I got tired of the hammering home of the point. The fact that they felt they had to do that is an indication of how much Americans were resented in Britain, not just for their manners and culture, and romancing women with gifts of luxury goods they hadn't seen in a very long time (getting many pg) but also for being wasteful with food and supplies that British sailors were dying from U boat attacks to bring to Britain.
  • I live in grosvenor square is an all star british production with Anna Neagle and Rex Harrison; Neagle at the time the biggest box office star in England and much of the rest of the world excluding the US. It is very British in style i.e. to say Merchant-Ivory, English Patient etc. The movie takes its time but it is worth it. The tragic battle for the heart of Neagle by the US officer, Dean Jagger and the British officer Harrison is tragic or is it?. The movie seems to be serving the higher purpose of post-war rekindling of Anglo-American relations and as a source of gratitude to the Americans by the British for saving the free world. Either way, performances are all around good with Neagle being the stand-out. The scene as a stenographer, while a list of dead officers' names are read is especially noteworthy. There's really not much more to add. I could detail every scene of the movie and it still wouldn't change a thing, to you, when you see it; because it's all atmosphere, directing and the acting. It's very subtlely done and in my book that is always a plus. So, if you like those merchant-ivory movies, you might not love this one but you will definitely laud it.
  • Grosvenor Square in London, more commonly known as Eisenhowerplatz because that's where the Allied Commander in Chief lived and had his headquarters. A large concentration of American GIs lived there as well and that's where the story begins in I Live At Grosvenor Square.

    In fact the entire United Kingdom was one large armed camp with GIs quartered in every nook and cranny. I find it singularly ironic in that one of the objections to the British that started the American Revolution was the quartering of soldiers in civilian homes. Look it up. 160+ years later and we're over there with the largest invading army in history and they're going out of their way to quarter us and like it.

    American Army Air Force sergeant Dean Jagger is one of those quartered in a posh London home now used as a barracks a fact the British family there puts up with but not liking it. Jagger makes the acquaintance of Anna Neagle who comes from the upper crust as does her steady boyfriend Rex Harrison. The three form an unlikely trio, friendly at first, but when Jagger moves in on Neagle, Rex is put out.

    Later on in America a decade later a similar film was made with Robert Taylor, Richard Todd, and Joan Collins entitled D-Day the Sixth of June. This film ends also with D-Day, but as to how the love triangle straightens out, you watch the film for.

    Anna Neagle and her producer husband Herbert Wilcox produced this film and of course Neagle was top billed as always. But she sang not a note. Instead guest star from America Irene Manning best remembered for playing Fay Templeton in Yankee Doodle Dandy played herself at a USO show and sang the British ballad Home. It's quite a lovely piece, one of my favorites which Gracie Fields recorded over there and Dean Martin used on one of his albums 20 years later.

    I Live In Grosvenor Square is a nice romantic type film, very well done by the impeccably cast ensemble.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    An American soldier in London falls for a titled lady already engaged to a new acquaintance of his who is running for local office. The large presence of American soldiers at first upsets the British routine, but like in any other culture, once an understanding and common goal is revealed, everybody finds they are connected as if they've known each other all of their lives. It is this aspect of the film that is touching, not the slight romantic complications. Had that been all this film was about, it would be an unimportant bore.

    All of the actors do good jobs, but it is Rex Harrison as the British love interest who stands out. The relationship between American Dean Jagger and the cook of the British household he is staying in is another big highlight of the film. It starts off cold on the part of the cook, but ends up warmly and is even touching as the two become friends. Anna Neagle plays the heroine. She is very pretty, but rather bland at times. Resembling Irene Dunne, Neagle was the most popular actress of the British cinema in the 30's and 40's, and appeared in practically every type of movie imaginable. At one point, she does break loose and does a mean jitterbug with Jagger that is brief but enjoyable. Robert Morley is amusing as the eccentric owner of the house Jagger is staying in, and Nancy Price is both funny and moving as the cook. Jane Darwell's scenes, added for American release, add no point to the story except to Americanize it as she receives letters from son Jagger.

    While slow and sometimes ponderous, the film does take an amusing look at the difference between American and British cultures in spite of the language that they share. The poem at the end wraps up everything nicely. This is worth a look for those studying cinema dealing with World War II and inter-cultural relationships.
  • This film was made just before Wilcox and Neagle really hit their stride with a series of films set in a sort of never never land otherwise called Mayfair.Rex Harrison was shortly to go off to Hollywood for a contract which would end in personal humiliation for him and his wife Lilli Palmer when his mistress,Carol Landis,committed suicide because he would not divorce Palmer and marry her.Sexy Rexy as he was known has a powerful screen presence even today.So the basic failing of this slow and often tedious film is that Neagle falls for the lugubrious Jagger instead of Harrison.Then the ending is milked for all its worth,a real 4 hanky job.however it just doesn't work today.Also the idea that Harrison could get out of camp to meet Neagle the day night before D Day is laughable.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This seems to be something of a forgotten film despite being a major moneymaker of its year and starring Anna Neagle, a massively famous British star who never managed to conquer the American market.

    Evidently written as a means of encouraging co-operation and mutual understanding between British citizens and the American troops stationed in their homes during the massive build up to D-Day, the first half of the film as a result suffers badly from some forced comedy around linguistic and geographical differences. The actors all look a little uncomfortable in these sequences. The first half of the film is largely devoted to this strained humour and the building of a romance between an English woman (Neagle) and an American flyer (Dean Jagger.) Much time is also given over to Rex Harrison's character who is engaged to Neagle and campaigning for election as the local MP for a rural constituency, the latter overseen by his father (Robert Morley) - a kindly but very tradition-bound individual.

    I was finding all of this to be a little labored until the final third of the film which suddenly changes gears to become a minor masterpiece of sentiment and emotion. At that point I realised the writers have deliberately spent a lot of time setting up the characters and their interactions so that when the key moments occur they are underpinned by real knowledge of who these people are.

    Several scenes in this final act are played to emotional perfection; a) Nancy Price as a harridan of a housekeeper revealed to have a deeply caring relationship with the American pilots in her care, so much so that she wants to leave her savings to one who she regards as a son. b) Robert Morley almost casually placing a watch on a man's wrist and mentioning that it belonged to his son who died in the First World War. c) Rex Harrison giving up his chance at marriage to stage a simple meeting between the two people he knows to be in love. d) Anna Neagle writing down a list of names of deceased air crew she is receiving over the phone as part of her military duties, pausing only slightly at the identity of one of them who is known to her.

    As a very talky piece the need for good performances is essential. Neagle carries with her a great weight of emotion constantly visible in her eyes, Morley (four years younger than Neagle) plays her father with great sincerity and emotion and Rex Harrison shows both class and dignity in his role.

    Production values are adequate but there is a reliance in one important scene on very scratched stock footage.

    Overall, this is a sentimental piece that will grab at your heart in ways least expected.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Just ended up watching this film for the second time and not because its that good a film, more for a want of anything better.

    It's made at the fag end of World War II as I imagine, a kind of propaganda film of the we're all in the same boat variety. This notion is woven as a thread throughout the movie, popping up in different guises.

    One of the most convoluted being after a USAF plane crash, in the vicinity of a west country village. The aircraft of course has a yank flag, the decision is made to present it to the local school. The Duke makes a ceramonial occasion of it, but this is where it gets very contrived. The kid he hands it to is supposed to be a school pupil, but and here's the Duke's speech to the lad (paraphrased). "Your ancestor left this village and travelled on the Mayflower, to the country where this flag comes from" so of course who better?

    Because we have two stars of the silver screen Neagle and Harrison they're of course of the upper class "don't you know old bean" in their stately pile. With dear old Robert Morley as the Grand Old Duke of the Manor. They're living just the same as the rest of us, having to vacate it for the War Effort.

    The romantic couple Neagle and Harrison turned into an infernal triangle, when the yank muscled in chancing his arm.

    Quite appropriate given the apparent want of his compatriots in both world wars, last in and claimed the Star Prize.