Classic Film Review – I Married a Witch

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Brenda Fellman

I Married A Witch classic film review – In 1672, Jennifer (Veronica Lake) and her father Daniel (Cecil Kellaway) are burned at the stakes for being witches, by puritan Jonathan Wooley (Fredric March). Jennifer curses his line so that all his sons will marry the wrong woman and be miserable. When, in the 20th century, Jennifer and Daniel are freed from the tree that had kept their souls imprisoned, her father informs her of a better curse. Daniel’s suggested curse is that it would have been for them to have known love but for them to never be able to be with the one they love. With this information Jennifer decides to make Jonathan’s descended Wallace fall in love with her, but hilarity happens when she ends up drinking the love potion that was meant for Wallace.

This is a fun film, that has a very fast story line. After the initial beginning of the film set in 1672, and the forwarding scenes where Jonathan’s descended are shown to be miserable, once the story reaches the 20th century where Wallace is introduced, and the witches are freed everything from that point onwards until the ending spans about 48 to 74 hours.

I Married A Witch has good acting throughout. This is especially so when you have two actors, who don’t like each other, can still do a good love scene together and have it be believable. That is the case with Fredric March and Veronica Lake. The two of them feuded throughout the making of the film. At one point after an incident involving Lake hiding a 40-pound weight in her costume before March had to carry her, he nicknamed the film “I married a B**ch.”

Though it is kind of amusing that when Jennifer is messing with Wallace it comes across as real. This is due to the fact that Veronica Lake is loving every minute of it whilst Fredric March who plays Wallace is sincerely irritated by her mischievous. It makes the film and acting really come alive.

Most of the cast had problems with Veronica Lake, and even Joel McCrea who had been initially cast as the lead, turned it down because he didn’t want to work with her again. Yet beside all this both Fredric March and Veronica Lake gave off great performances. Another good performance in the film is Cecil Kellaway as the drunken old troublemaker Daniel.

Though the actual ins and outs of being a witch, or a sorcerer, are vague in the film. I Married A Witch adds such classics like flying brooms and spells, in addition to some Hollywood plot conveniences as immortality and the ability to transform into smoke when it suits them. The way the magic is shown on the screen has some innovative special effects for the time period; Jenifer not only slides down a banister, she slides up one too. Additionally, a wind machine was employed at the wedding, and there’s a flying taxi cab for the finale, this effect was done with a model city and a miniature cab suspended by wires.

This film is a fun and while in some case the comedy falls flat, the parts that are funny out shine them.  All in all the, I Married A Witch is an enjoyable watch.

I Married A Witch facts

I Married A Witch – Cast

Fredric March – Jonathan Wooley/ Nathaniel Wooley/Samuel Wooley/ Wallace Wooley
Veronica Lake – Jennifer
Robert Benchley – Dr. Dudley White
Cecil Kellaway – Daniel

 

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Classic Film Review ̵…

by Brenda Fellman time to read: 2 min
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