I Married a Witch
(René Clair, 1942)
Veronica Lake and her hair bewitch a droll politician (Fredric March), and threaten both the election and his impending marriage. Ms. Lake is beautiful, but can’t act. She does this “cutesy” act which is pretty damned irritating. And March seems fairly wooden for the lead of a romantic comedy. I read that these two grew to hate each other on the set, and that Joel McCrea declined the March role because he didn’t want to work again with Lake, his Sullivan’s Travels co-star. Was Veronica the Paris Hilton of her time?
The supporting cast gets all the laughs here. Cecil Kelliway, Robert Benchley and Susan Hayward outshine their stars repeatedly. Kelliway, in particular, seems to relish his role as Lake’s witchy father who aids her in avenging a family debt.
This film apparently set the stage for the TV show Bewitched, starring the twinkle-nosed Elizabeth Montgomery. From what I recall, that show consistently provided more laughs. Heck, I’m guessing even Sabrina, the Teenage Witch was more fun.