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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

The Cockeyed Miracle (1946)



Reviews and Comments

But for Frank Morgan and Keenan Wynn in the lead roles, this lightweight ghost comedy wouldn't have been anything special. And, when it's all over and you think back on the plot, there really wasn't a whole lot the ghosts did besides comment on the action and fret to each other in desperation. But Morgan and Wynn are an utter delight together, and they make this comedy a whole lot of fun.

The set up is a cute gimmick. Morgan dies an old man and becomes a ghost, where he meets up with his father, Wynn, who had died at a young age. So the younger man is the father of the older one, and the usual father-son discussions take on an unusual tone. The problem? Morgan left his financial affairs up in the air when he died, and he doesn't feel he can leave before seeing that things are set right for his family. The movie is based on a play by George Seaton, and I suspect it makes a better play than movie. The stage influence is clearly evident -- in the movie, two characters can talk freely and loudly one room away from another character and not fear discovery. This kind of staging is natural in a play, but it's awkward in a movie. But, as I say, this movie is gentle fun, which is harder to come by these days than it should be.