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The Palm Beach Story with The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek

The Palm Beach Story
The archetypal romantic comedy storyline about a divorcing couple who find themselves falling for their mates all over again gets turned upside down and given a good shaking in one of Preston Sturges’s most uproarious farces. Claudette Colbert and Joel McCrea are the loving but financially struggling couple who find themselves tempted by new partners; Rudy Vallee is the millionaire who woos Colbert and Mary Astor is Vallee’s divorced sister who sets her sights on McCrea. From its frenetic main title sequence to its jaw-dropping finale, The Palm Beach Story is Sturges at his most inventive, unpredictable, and inimitable.

The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek
In Sturges’s most censor-defying farce, Betty Hutton is Trudy Kockenlocker, a small-town policeman’s daughter who attends a farewell dance for WWII soldiers only to later find that she’s become the bride of the now-missing Private Ratzkiwatzki. When her childhood friend Norval Jones (Sturges’s favorite small-town schnook Eddie Bracken) tries to help her out of her predicament, the complications only increase and Trudy unexpectedly falls for her old pal. Sturges was nominated for his Original Screenplay (competing in the category against his own Hail the Conquering Hero, which also starred Bracken).

The Palm Beach Story
DIRECTED BY: Preston Sturges. WRITTEN BY: Preston Sturges. WITH: Claudette Colbert, Joel McCrea, Mary Astor, Rudy Vallee. 1942. 90 min. USA. B&W. English. 35mm. New print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive.

The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek
DIRECTED BY: Preston Sturges. WRITTEN BY: Preston Sturges. WITH: Eddie Bracken, Betty Hutton, Diana Lynn, William Demarest. 1944. 101 min. USA. B&W. English. DCP.


Academy Museum of Motion Pictures
6067 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036
Los Angeles, CA 90036 United States
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