One of the classics. I may be bending the genre
rules just a bit, but this is a great movie.
Cast, Crew, and Other Info
James Stewart as Elwood P. Dowd
Josephine Hull as Veta Louise Simmons
Victoria Horne as Myrtle Mae Simmons
Charles Drake as Dr. Sanderson
Peggy Dow as Miss Kelly
Cecil Kellaway as Dr. Chumley
Jesse White as Wilson
Written by Mary Chase, Oscar Brodney and Myles
Directed by Henry Koster
Complete information is available from the
Past movie reviews can be found here.
Elwood P. Dowd and his imaginary friend keep messing
up his family’s
“Harvey and I have things to do… we sit in the
bars… have a drink
or two… and play the juke box. Very soon the faces
of the other
people turn towards me and they smile. They say: ‘We
don’t know your
name, mister, but you’re all right, all right.’
Harvey and I warm
ourselves in these golden moments. We came as
strangers – soon we have
friends. They come over. They sit with us. They drink
with us. They
talk to us. They tell us about the great big terrible
done and the great big wonderful things they’re going
to do. Their
hopes, their regrets. Their loves, their hates. All
because nobody ever brings anything small into a bar.
Then I introduce
them to Harvey, and he’s bigger and grander than
anything they can
offer me. When they leave, they leave impressed. The
seldom come back.”
The reveal in the encyclopedia came too soon. The
reveal should have
waited for the man getting chased.
This is fairly original. It’s a new twist
on the guardian
angel idea that Jimmy Stewart fans had already seen
in It’s A
Wonderful Life, but it has a very different
approach than that
film, and it predates a lot of the other versions. I
give it 4 out of
The effects are extremely limited but
effective. I give it 5
out of 6.
The story is well laid out, with the comedic
twists and turns
involved. I could tell it was adapted from a play,
but I’m not sure
I’d have picked up on that if I hadn’t known going
in. Only the low
point bugs me, and that’s not so much a mistake as
something that I
think could have been better. I give it 5 out of 6.
The acting is great. Jimmy Stewart was
always impressive, as
was Josephine Hull. (Hull won the Oscar for this
role, in fact.) I
give it 6 out of 6.
The emotional response is very nice. You
won’t be rolling on
the floor laughing, but you’ll be smiling and
chuckling from start to
finish. This is just generally amusing, with a lead
incredibly likeable. I give it 5 out of 6.
The production was very well done. The
appropriately by location, the shots are framed wide
enough to leave
room for Harvey, and the comic editing is very nicely
timed. I give
it 5 out of 6.
Overall, this is a little gem that I would
anyone. I give it 6 out of 6.
In total, Harvey receives 36 out of 42.