Starring: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Robert Mitchum
Director: Stanley Donen
Running Time: 101 mins
The Grass Is Greener is a British film about a wealthy aristocratic married couple whose relationship is broken apart when an American tourist has an affair with the wife, leading to hilarious complications.
This is quite a fun and pleasant comedy. With expert performances from the likes of Cary Grant, Jean Simmons, Deborah Kerr and Robert Mitchum, this is a very impressive film, with good humour, very good directing and interesting drama to go alongside the rather farcical nature of it all.
Let’s start by talking about what sort of a film this really is. In effect, it’s a romantic/screwball comedy, with affairs galore and silly humour throughout, however this stands out as something a little different from that genre.
It’s based on a 1956 play, and this film really does the theatrical production justice (not that I’ve seen it). Director Stanley Donen does a fantastic job at making this appear more dramatic and important than a simple rom-com by holding very long shots all done in one take, and only using a handful of sets to place his film in.
What’s more is that the actors all put a good bit of effort into this to make their characters a lot more melodramatic than you’d expect. The overacting by some, particularly Jean Simmons, is hilarious, however it again echoes the theatre to some degree, adding to the drama of it all too.
However, don’t think that this is too dramatic a film. Yes, it’s got a great story with consistent intrigue, but the main thing is that it’s funny. It’s simple, farcical humour throughout, like other comedies of manners such as The Importance Of Being Earnest, and that makes it not only funny, but pleasant and easy-going to watch.
Simply, this is a classic sort of old comedy that will entertain, interest and warm you, with little need for you to use your brain, whilst it uses its own, and that’s why it gets a 7.3 from me.