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The Beautiful Blonde From Bashful Bend


Oh yeah — I bought all of Preston Sturges’ movies (that are available), and this is apparently the last of them I haven’t seen.

Heh heh. It’s the shootingest kid.

Good form.

Oh, it’s a musical?

You know, Betty Grable is one of those actors I never can quite place. I bet I’ve seen dozens of movies with her, but I don’t think I would actually recognise her.

I know! Shocking!

Or … perhaps I’ve just seen a handful of films with her, but just remember the name because it’s er memorable — it’s such an anti-Hollywood-made-up-name: Grable.

Hm… this bluray is pretty odd — the black levels are like #333 instead of #000. Hm. Perhaps I can just lower the brightness?

Well, that looks better.

But… this movie is just kinda odd all over. I mean, I think if I were to read a recap of what I’ve seen so far, I would have assumed that it was a hilarious, madcap movie. But instead it’s just… lethargic. There are gags, but you have to tell yourself that: “Yes, I can see that this is a gag. It is even funny. I should probably laugh?”

That is, the pacing is just way off. Grable is doing her best to get things poppin’, but the rest just seem to be mouthing off lines while looking at the director for direction.

I’m normally all for a good yokel bit, but even that fails here.

Sturges’ good movies are wonderful. This just doesn’t work, despite a pretty good script and some scenes that are really funny. It’s like… imagine this movie directed by one of the old studio system workhorses like Sidney Lanfield or George Marshall, who pumped out several films each yea? Craftsmen who really knew what they were doing and did it in a reliably zippy way? It could have been hilarious.

It does have the silliest shootout ever, though — it’s a great spoof of Westerns.


The film, Sturges’ first Technicolor production, was not well received at the time it was released, and was generally conceded to be a disaster – even Betty Grable bad-mouthed it

Oh, and this was Sturges’ final movie in the US (but he did do one movie more, six years later, in France).

This is a hard one to throw the die on… it’s really not a good movie, but there’s bits that are really enjoyable. So ? Uhm. No, let’s go with:

The Beautiful Blonde From Bashful Bend. Preston Sturges. 1949.

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