© 1944 Warner Bros. Pictures

Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)

Reportedly Cary Grant was later unhappy with his acting in this film, thinking it hackneyed and completely over the top. Indeed his performance is over the top, as is nearly everything else in this film. Based on a long-running Broadway play, the overall direction is stagey, all the acting is overdone, the villains are cartoonish, and the supposedly suspenseful scenes are far from scary. But these are not actually reasons to avoid this delightful little film. Light entertainment, yes, but entertaining nevertheless.

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“Damn it, you act as if you're in kindergarten! This is the big bad world, full of mean people, where nasty things happen!”
-Mike Talman (Richard Crenna)
from Wait Until Dark