Cactus Flower (1969) from Tuna

Cactus Flower (1969) marked the film debut of Goldie Hawn, in a performance which earned her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar. After watching this adaptation of a Broadway play, it puzzled me that her performance earned an Oscar, the only one to date, until I looked at the  competition that year. Not that her performance wasn't good, but she has done much more in other films.


It may be the worst of Hawn's films in terms of exposure. We see her in the beginning in a pink nightie, but the most we can spot is part of one bun.
Cactus Flower stars Walter Matthau as a dentist and Hawn's boyfriend, and Ingrid Bergman as his receptionist assistant, who has always been in love with him. Matthau told Hawn he was married, to avoid her trapping him into marriage. He decides he wants to marry her after all, but she demands to meet his wife and make sure the divorce is ok. Matthau gets Bergman to play his wife.
There are some funny moments, and Bergman is pure class, even in a part this frivolous. The ending is obvious just about as soon as the plot is set up, but the film has charm, and some good comedy moments.  For me, they didn't do much adapting to make it a film, but rather transplanted the stage play to a sound stage, however, the talent of the principles carried it off anyway. It is a must for Hawn fans, but is little more than a feel good romantic comedy.  

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The People Vote ...

IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C+.

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