Saturday, August 20, 2011

Nothing But the Truth (1941)


“No, I don't lose. That's not a lie. That's an opinion. If I said YOU were good-looking - That'd be a lie.”

            Nothing But the Truth is the third pairing of Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard. While The Cat and the Canary and The Ghost Breakers were in the same vain story wise Nothing But the Truth is a departure. Even though both of their previous films’ plots were pretty much the same they were still funny and entertaining. Hope and Goddard are very entertaining without a doubt but there are many aspects of the film that keep it from being all around amusing.
            There really is not much to the plot and nothing really outstanding about it. Hope plays Steve Bennett who has joined a stockbroker firm down in Florida. As soon as he gets there his boss Ralston’s niece Gwen Saunders (Goddard) comes in with money. She got the money from running a scheme. Gwen gives ten thousand dollars in cash to Steve and he tells her he can invest it and get her double the money. He has no idea how she got it and does not ask because he has become smitten with her.
            At a meeting with Ralston and his associates Steve says that no one has to lie someone can be an honest business man and tell the truth. Ralston and his associates offer Steve ten thousand dollars. Steve takes the bet so he can double Gwen’s money and right after the he agrees to the bet he sees Gwen walking out with one of the associates.
            So now Steve is stuck with telling the truth for the whole day and Ralston and the others cruelly ask him personal questions that he has to honestly answer. Ralston even has him come on his private ship for a weekend with some important people. Gwen will be on the ship as well. Ralston continues to abuse Steve with the questions in front of the guest.
            Once on the ship the whole film goes all over the place and gets too silly.
            Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard were excellent despite a drawn out plot and really ridiculous moments. I will let it slid that Hope gets stripped of his clothes and has to put on a woman’s robe! There is not too much else I can say about the rest of the cast I did not really like their characters which I guess is the point.
            Edith Head once again designed the costumes for Paulette Goddard as she did for many of the actress’s other films.
            Nothing But the Truth has its moments where it is really funny and well done but most of the time I found it to be over the top and annoying. It was predictable mostly because Screwball comedy was on its way out and had been done so much previously. I do not mind the fact that I sat through it I am glad I sat through it, I am always happy to sit through a Paulette Goddard film because it seems a handful of her films are hard to find. I caught Nothing But the Truth on TCM when the station had Paulette Goddard as their actor of the day a few weeks ago and it is available on DVD through a Bob Hope collection called Thanks for the Memories. See the film if you can.