Our top pick of the week is The Palm Beach Story (1942) starring Joel McCrea and Claudette Colbert. It will be released Tuesday on DVD and blu-ray by The Criterion Collection.
The Palm Beach Story (1942 is an hilarious screwball comedy about marriage and divorce among the idle rich and one of director Preston Sturges best films.
|Millionaire John D. Hackensacker III (Rudy Vallee) romances Gerry Jeffers (Claudette Colbert) in The Palm Beach Story (1942).|
|Joel McCrea, Claudette Colbert and Rudy Vallee in a publicity still for The Palm Beach Story (1942).|
The Palm Beach story is full of brilliant performances from many members of the Sturges stock company. The drunken members of the Quail and Ale Club, whom Gerry meets on the train to Palm Beach, feature many familiar faces from Sturges' films including Chester Conklin, Jimmy Conlin and the unforgettable and always hilarious William Demarest.
|A Spanish-language poster for The Palm Beach Story (1942). The title translates as "a rich husband."|
Mary Astor was not part of Sturges' stock company, but she gives an hilarious performance as Hackensacker's sister, the much-married and man-crazy Princess Centimillia. Crooner Vallee also gives a fine performance as the quirky Hackensacker, a millionaire who rides in the economy class and fusses over buying a 75-cent breakfast.
The Criterion Collection DVD and blu-ray has several special features including interviews with comedian Bill Hader and film historian James Harvey and a 1943 radio broadcast of The Palm Beach Story.
|Millionaire John D. Hackensacker III (Rudy Vallee) presents Gerry Jeffers (Claudette Colbert) with a huge engagement ring as her jealous husband (Joel McCrea) looks on in The Palm Beach Story (1942).|