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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

THANK YOU, JEEVES (1936)

He only gets third billing (behind Arthur Treacher & Virginia Fields), but this was effectively David Niven’s first starring role and he’s charmingly silly as P. G. Wodehouse’s dunderheaded Bertie Wooster, master (in name only) to Jeeves, that most unflappable of valets. As an adaptation, it’s more like a watered-down reflection of THE 39 STEPS/'35 than a real Wodehousian outing, and that’s too bad since the interplay between Treacher & Niven isn’t so far off the mark. Alas, the ‘B’ movie mystery tropes & forced comedy grow wearisome even at a brief 57 minutes. The perfectly dreadful sequel, STEP LIVELY, JEEVES/'37, finished off the series. (see above)

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