There Was a Young Lady (1953)

  |  Comedy

There Was a Young Lady (1953) Poster

A super-efficient young secretary foils the plans of a gang of smash-and grab robbers.


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5 August 2016 | trimmerb1234
| Vehicle for British stage and screen "golden couple" of '40s and '50s Michael Dennison and Dulcie Gray
Unfortunately it's surprisingly long and rather dull journey for nearly all the way.

It is difficult to work out how something with most of the (very familiar) elements of a British crime comedy: a fair bit of caper/capable supporting cast of usual suspects in familiar roles/comprehensible story, hardly raises a smile, until the mildly amusing plot twist in the last 5 minutes. The dialogue is flat footed and lacking in wit, and has what is the give-away: lines with no purpose whatsoever - not advancing the plot nor illuminating a character, purely superfluous. Michael Dennison was not a comedic actor and not capable of, and nor seeing the need, to make silk purses out of a sow's ears. (In "The Importance of Being Ernest", he was well suited to Wilde's throw-away witticisms).

The "young lady" in the title refers to MD's would-be fiancé, rather improbably the 39 year old Dulcie Gray, whose manner is distinctly wifely and bossy, and seems decades older, not unfortunately a vivacious Geraldine McKewan in her first film appearance, aged 19 in a distinctly under-written part. I can only assume that fans wanted to see MD and DG as a couple (in real life married for nearly sixty years until his death). To have swapped the two ladies would have been sacrilege for the fans but would have perhaps saved the film by energising script, cast and director.

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