Louisa (1950)

Genres - Comedy, Romance  |   Sub-Genres - Domestic Comedy, Romantic Comedy  |   Run Time - 90 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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While not a film that would make anyone's "best" list, Louisa is nevertheless a thoroughly winning little light comedy. What makes Louisa unusual is the fact that it deals with a romance among the "older set," rather than among young people. This could be dangerous, as a writer could tend to go for sentimentalizing this situation, but scenarist Stanley Roberts does a fine job of keeping sentiment to a minimum and focusing on creating lively characters and putting them into workable, if familiar, situations. The screenplay is very well structured and Roberts is adept at set-ups that pay-off in a pleasing, if predictable, fashion. Director Alexander Hall keeps things moving at a good pace, but finds time for character details. And he's aided by an excellent cast, headed by the delightful Spring Byington. The actress is a sheer joy to watch, feisty and lovable without being cloying, and creating a character that we care deeply about. Charles Coburn and Edmund Gwenn use their considerable skills to delineate her suitors, two separate characters that appeal to the audience in very different ways. Ronald Reagan, Ruth Hussey and a young Piper Laurie do well as the "young people," but it's the "oldsters" that enchant and engage us.