Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948)

Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream Housemr-blandings
Directed by H.C. Potter
Written by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank from a novel by Eric Hodgins
RKO Radio Pictures
Repeat viewing/Amazon Instant Video

Muriel Blandings: I want it to be a soft green, not as blue-green as a robin’s egg, but not as yellow-green as daffodil buds. …  Now, the dining room. I’d like yellow. Not just yellow; a very gay yellow….  I tell you, Mr. PeDelford, if you’ll send one of your men to the grocer for a pound of their best butter, and match that exactly, you can’t go wrong! Now, this is the paper we’re going to use in the hall. …. There’s some little dots in the background, and it’s these dots I want you to match. Not the little greenish dot near the hollyhock leaf, but the little bluish dot between the rosebud and the delphinium blossom…. Now the kitchen is to be white. Not a cold, antiseptic hospital white. A little warmer, but still, not to suggest any other color but white. Now for the powder room – in here – I want you to match this thread, and don’t lose it….  As you can see, it’s practically an apple red. Somewhere between a healthy winesap and an unripened Jonathan.

Mr. PeDelford: You got that Charlie?

Charlie, Painter: Red, green, blue, yellow, white.

Mr. PeDelford: Check.

How can you go wrong with Cary Grant, Myrna Loy, and Melvyn Douglas?  If you have ever had any remodeling done, you will almost certainly relate to this very funny film.

Jim Blandings (Grant) feels that he is in a rut with his advertising job and his settled life with wife Muriel (Loy) and two kids in their Manhattan apartment.  He spots an ad for a farmhouse in Connecticut and decides this is the change they all need.  Of course, a few renovations are needed …

mr. blandings 2

And naturally this means or less rebuilding the place from the ground up.  The Blandings encounter every inconvenience and expense known to anyone familiar with this game.  They are aided by their sense of humor and advice from bachelor attorney and friend Bill Cole (Douglas).  With Reginald Denny as the bemused architect.

mr. blandings 1

This is funny stuff.  The gags come not only from the chicanery of the contractors but from the fanciful expectations of the clients.  Grant and Loy have terrific chemistry.  Or maybe its just that Loy makes every man she marries in the movies fall in love with her. Recommended.

Re-release trailer

Clip – choosing paint colors


4 thoughts on “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948)

  1. This is a very funny movie! That description of the paint you’ve picked out is sheer genius. I also love the scenes of Grant and Loy getting washed in the morning in the same tiny bathroom in their existing house, working around each other!

    • This movie is the perfect demonstration of why the films produced by the studio and star system were the best! Imagine this without Cary, Myrna, Melvyn and those writers.

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