Plot: Hunky Leopold Dilg is innocent! He's too Cary Grant not to be. Nevertheless, he's been arrested for arson and its subsequent arson. He manages to escape and retreat to his friend Nora Shelley's house, a house that has unfortunately just been rented to renowned law professor Michael Lightcap. Their philosophies clash while they half-assedly battle for the affections of Miss Shelley. As expected, a threesome ensues. And it's fiery stuff!
Cary Grant isn't as good an actor as either of his two co-stars, the sophisticated Jean Arthur or the cute-as-a-button Ronald Colman, but the three of them have this classy chemistry and get some nicely written stuff to bounce off each other. The dialogue's funny even though it failed to draw a single laugh from my melancholy soul, but I liked some of the philosophical/political stuff in there, the characters almost working more like symbols than actual people. This is one of the most literate screwbally script I've heard. I also really liked how this thing was shot. The quick edits of the preface set up the story in a cool way, and there was some interesting camera work during conversations with characters with some breakfast panning and the use of a stairway rail. I also really liked shots that managed to squeeze all the characters on the screen without seeming completely unnatural like a lot of movies from this era. You get all kinds of scenes where things are going on in the foreground while Cary Grant can be seen on the other side of a window. Director George Stevens knows how to utilize every inch of my television screen. There's one shot that befuddled me though. I don't recall a lot of close-ups in this movie, but there's this extreme close-up shot of a character named Tilney as he starts to cry. There were a few reasons why I liked the tears at that point in the movie, but I thought the close-up was odd. And I have to confess that I didn't really care for the ending of the movie at all.