Sunday, May 1, 2011

I Love You Again (1940)

“Ever since you got off that boat you've been chasing me like an amorous goat. You've tried your darnedest to make me fall in love with you and now you have.”

            I Love You Again starts off with William Powell as a penny pinching business man from a small Pennsylvania town named Larry Wilson. Larry is on a boat on his way back home from a business trip. He is sitting with some men who drink but he does not. One of the men is drunk and goes outside. Larry walking back to his room sees the man on the deck fall overboard. He tries to save the man by throwing the life saving tube down to him but Larry gets pulled with the tube into the water.
            When Larry wakes up he’s suffering from amnesia and reverts back to a former persona as an ex-con named George Carey who at first thinks it is 1931. The man he saved, “Doc” Ryan, goes along with Larry’s new persona. George and Doc see that Larry has a business and a nice chunk of money in the bank. They decide to go back to the small town and clean Larry out and run. Their plan backfires when Larry’s wife Kay (Myrna Loy) turns up at the harbor.
            At a hotel George finds out that Kay wants a divorce. He is totally smitten with Kay he does not want to let her go. Unfortunately he finds out that Larry was very stingy and never paid any attention to Kay at all he was always busy with things in the community. She also informs him that she is already engaged to a man named Herbert. George, Kay, and Herbert go out to dinner that night. Since George does not want to give Kay the divorce he tells her to wait a few weeks. She sees this as Larry wanting to wait until an election is over. She agrees just to cooperate and get the whole deal over with. Before Kay gets into a cab to leave George asks for one more kiss and the kiss is so fantastic that both are left swept off their feet.
            Once Kay and George get off the train back home all the chaos and scheming along with much hilarity begins.  
            Kay does not trust the new Larry. He is nice and charming and spending money like he never has before. She feels Larry is just being nice because he wants to be favorable to the public. All she wants for a while is just to move on and marry Herbert. George buys his wife nice nightgowns and clothes without even looking at the price. After a very nice walk Kay warns Larry to be on the lookout for her chasing him now.
I Love You Again movie 1940 William Powell, Myrna Loy, Frank McHugh, Edmund Lowe, Donald Douglas, Nella Walker
            We all know that William Powell and Myrna Loy end up together in the end so no spoilers there. The ending is adorable.
            I think I Love You Again after The Thin Man films is one of Powell and Loy’s best films. They were both so good and so smooth and sophisticated. Powell’s ability at physical comedy is amazing. He does not go over the top with it he just does it straight. Acting as Larry he has to take a Boy Scout group out into the woods. First one of the kids finds Larry’s uniform in a closet in Larry’s office and the look on Powell’s face says it all. One of the boys is looking to get his next highest badge and the way that has to be done is by having Larry run through the woods with deer track marks put on the bottom of his shoe and the boy has to follow the trail until he can find Larry. Powell all ruffed up and nasty and falling all over the place is a panic. Loy is at her most sarcastic and dead pan. Some of the lines she was given I was laughing so hard at because of the way she delivered them like this one:I often wished I could turn your head - on a spit, over a slow fire.” Her best scene was when George had asked her to make him some eggs because he was hungry. Later on he says he was not hungry he just wanted to talk to her so she got mad calmly took the plate with the eggs and dumped them on George’s head.
            Perhaps the reason why this film was so good is because W.S. Van Dyke directed it. He is responsible for originally pairing Powell and Loy in The Thin Man. Like The Thin Man Van Dyke excellently captures Powell and Loy’s chemistry and their wit together.
            I Love You Again is really funny and very well acted by Myrna Loy and William Powell. The plot is not bad it works out pretty well because it is not the same plot as most screwball comedies. You can never go wrong with a Powell and Loy film and this proves even more why they were such a fantastic screen pairing.

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