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Has Anybody Seen My Gal?

(1952 c 88')

En: 6 Ed: 6

A millionaire without relatives gives $100,000 to a family that does not know he is wealthy, and he watches to see how they handle the money.

         In the late 1920s wealthy Samuel Fulton (Charles Coburn) is ill and wants to leave his money to the family of the woman who refused to marry him. He goes to see them as John Smith, placing an ad for a room in their house and then renting it. Harriet Blaisdell (Lynn Bari) gives him a receipt. Charles Blaisdell (Larry Gates) is upset but lets him stay one week. Harriet accepts a date for Millicent Blaisdell (Piper Laurie) with Carl Pennock (Skip Homeier) because he has money. Dan Stebbins (Rock Hudson) learns Millicent broke their date.

         Carl persuades Millicent to get into his new car. Smith and Roberta Blaisdell (Gigi Perreau) paint pictures. Charles hires Smith as a soda jerk. Millicent goes back to Dan, and they announce their engagement. Harriet cries. They celebrate with bathtub gin. Edward Norton (Frank Ferguson) brings Charles a check for $100,000 from an anonymous donor, and Harriet faints. Samuel tells Norton he is staying for a while. Harriet wants Charles to sell his store and buy new things. Dan changes his mind about marrying Millicent. Harriet tells Smith that he has to leave.

         Harriet buys expensive dresses and the biggest house. She learns to tango. Roberta visits Smith and her mongrel dog who are with Dan. Roberta says that Millicent is out with Carl.

         A cop tells Smith about a prohibition raid, and Smith leaves work to warn Millicent, who goes out a window. Smith is arrested, and Judge Wilkins (Paul Harvey) fines him $50. Dan pays it and quarrels with Millicent. Howard Blaisdell (William Reynolds) owes $2,000 from gambling, and Smith hears about it. Smith plays poker, wins, and pays Howard’s debt as they are raided. Judge Wilkins fines him $100. Dan pays it and says he gave two weeks notice.

         Howard lets Smith in the front door and says someone paid his debt. Smith goes out with Millicent, and Judge Wilkins tells the Blaisdells about Smith’s arrests. Smith takes Millicent to a silent movie to meet Dan, who says she should marry Carl. Mr. Pennock tells the Blaisdells that Smith and Millicent were necking. Harriet calls Smith a Casanova. He says he was comforting Millicent because Dan is leaving town. Millicent wishes they hadn’t got the money. Norton calls Smith that Charles needs money. Smith reads that Millicent is engaged to Carl. Martin Quinn fires Smith, and Dan says he has his ticket.

         At the engagement party Charles asks Mr. Pennock for $25,000 to pay off a margin on a stock, but he says no. Smith gives Charles a message from Norton denying him the $25,000. Charles tells Harriet that the Pennocks left because they are broke. Millicent announces her engagement to Carl is off.

         The Blaisdells move back to their old house, and Charles is getting his store back. Millicent and Dan are engaged. Roberta tells Smith his painting won and that reporters are coming. Smith leaves.

         This period comedy explores how suddenly acquired money can affect people’s lives while a wealthy man tries to regain some of the happiness he missed while gaining his money.

Copyright © 2012 by Sanderson Beck

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