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You Can't Take It with You (1938)

Comedy | 126 minutes
3,74 184 votes

Genre: Comedy / Romance

Duration: 126 minuten

Country: United States

Directed by: Frank Capra

Stars: James Stewart, Jean Arthur and Lionel Barrymore

IMDb score: 7,8 (27.896)

Releasedate: 1 September 1938

You Can't Take It with You plot

"You'll love them all for giving you the swellest time you've ever had!"

Alice Sycamore (Jean Arthur) must introduce her lover, Tony Kirby (James Stewart), to her own family. The Kirbys are wealthy, mean-spirited, and have a great mind of their own, while the Sycamores are good-hearted people. When the two families encounter each other, their lifestyle and philosophy collide.

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Full Cast & Crew

Actors and actresses

Alice Sycamore

Grandpa Martin Vanderhof

Anthony P. Kirby

Boris Kolenkhov

Essie Carmichael

Penny Sycamore

Paul Sycamore

Mr. Poppins

Mr. Ramsey

Reviews & comments


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avatar van mister blonde

mister blonde

  • 12473 messages
  • 5425 votes

Frank Capra. The best feel-good director ever. In his films, morals and sweet storylines can be a significant added value. The same here again. A film where the gist is that you should do what you feel like and that money is unimportant. Told by one of the best storytellers ever. Perhaps a visually insignificant director, but no one could translate stories so heart-warming and so sincere to the screen. Timing down to the 100th second, perfect casting and great dialogue and characters. This is cinema I love. And Capra is one of the greatest directors ever. It's in my top 10, even though I only saw 6 of his films. Very big 4 stars.

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avatar van Roger Thornhill

Roger Thornhill

  • 5583 messages
  • 2203 votes

When this film recently came back on TV, I took the opportunity to reread the original play (by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart), and it struck me that the play is more about the contrast between spontaneity and zest for life of the Sycamore's and the formality and dullness of the Kirby's, while in the film adaptation there is much more attention to the perniciousness of Wall Street and "big business". Fortunately, Capra and Riskin have left the fun, warmth and humor completely intact; the cards are of course stacked, because the Kirbys are almost caricaturally stiff and hardly get a fair chance, so we don't have to wonder where the filmmakers' sympathies lie, but that doesn't detract from the fun. Beautiful encounters between the two founding fathers in a classic Capra.

The play had its premiere in 1936 in New York and is therefore slightly older than the film, but in terms of "permissiveness" Broadway was ahead of Hollywood: I paid close attention, but the words brothel[ /i], [i]sex, virginity, lust and strip teaser have been neatly left out of the film script. (Perhaps they didn't make it to the stage either; in the end I only have the original play text by Kaufman and Hart, and of course I don't know what the director changed or deleted before the performance - I was not there at the premiere .)

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avatar van Film Pegasus

Film Pegasus (moderator films)

  • 30497 messages
  • 5205 votes

A pre-war acting style, still a difference from the old Hollywood of the 40s and 50s. Even though it was still overtaken by method acting. But under the wings of Frank Capra and a decent script (the original play won a Pulitzer Prize) and talented actors, this will be a wonderful film. Very simple with a somewhat moralizing thread. But I had a good laugh regularly and this is really a film that leaves such a good feeling. Comedy in a sincere way.

The first collaboration between James Stewart and Frank Capra and the film that made Stewart a star. It is striking how he has grown in his acting in a short time. In a few years he made some classics until he fought in the war and then, when another man, successfully returned to acting.

The last time we see Lionel Barrymore in motion before he was permanently confined to a wheelchair. The crutches were there for his health, not so much for the story. Jean Arthur is not bad, but Ann Miller as her sister is also special. The actress was only 15 years old, although she was clearly taller than Jean Arthur. The actress ended her career in Mulholland Drive.

A theatrical film with an old acting style, but the puzzle is good so that it is really enjoyable. Capra is clearly a master of the genre and creates a film that leaves you with a good feeling.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original