Penny Serenade

Movie Information

In Brief: As far as two-tissue tearjerkers go, they don't get much weepier than George Stevens' 1941 Cary Grant, Irene Dunne dram-com, Penny Serenade. Grant and Dunne play a couple whose marriage deteriorates following the loss of a child, and the melodrama doesn't come anywhere close to ending there. For all its emotionally exploitative holiday-set heartstring tugging the film never fully succumbs to saccharinity, deftly tempering its very nearly excessive sentiment with the appropriate touch of warm-hearted comedy from Grant and Dunne. Yes, its plot is full of soap opera contrivances, but the film has a sincerity that will suck you in in spite of yourself. This represents the final onscreen pairing of Grant and Dunne, and garnered Grant an Oscar nomination for what might amount to his most autobiographically honest performance. In lesser hands this film would've proven so treacly as to be unwatchable, but the teaming of Stevens, Grant and Dunne somewhat improbably pull it off. Be forewarned, this one may cause you to tear up the next time you hear "Silent Night" sung by kids. The Asheville Film Society will screen Penny Serenade on Tuesday, Dec. 13, at 7:30 p.m. at The Grail Moviehouse, hosted by Xpress movie critic Scott Douglas.
Genre: Drama
Director: George Stevens
Starring: Irene Dunne Cary Grant Beulah Bondi Edgar Buchanan Ann Doran
Rated: NR

The Asheville Film Society will screen Penny Serenade on Tuesday, Dec. 13, at 7:30 p.m. at The Grail Moviehouse, hosted by Xpress movie critic Scott Douglas.


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