Arsenic & Old Lace (Frank Capra, 1944)

Me? Mugging? I don't know what you mean!
What's it about? On his wedding day, Mortimer Brewster (Cary Grant) pays a quick visit to his two elderly aunts, accidentally discovers a dead body in a window seat and is aghast to discover the two kindly old women are actually 'charitable' serial killers. An increasingly frantic Mortimer spends the rest of the film trying to hide this fact from his wife and the police, a matter complicated by the antics of his two brothers; the hopelessly insane Teddy, who thinks he is Teddy Roosevelt, and the dangerously insane Jonathan, who has escaped from prison and has a dead body of his own to hide. 

Is it any good? A hilarious black comedy, with a frantic pace and wit that puts most modern comedies to shame. Grant's mugging might be a bit old-fashioned for some, but there's no denying his screen presence. Whereas most actors struggle to do a convincing double-take, Grant manages to deliver a triple-take at one point which is sublime piece of comic acting. Good fun.

Anything else I should know? It was adapted from the hit Broadway play, hence the staginess of the film. Sadly, Boris Karloff was not allowed to play the part of Jonathan since he was still appearing in the play at the time and the producers of it didn't want to lose him, meaning the running joke about Jonathan looking like Karloff is utterly redundant.

What does the Fonz think? Classic comedy. Chaaaaarge!

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