Just grab a copy, and enjoy. 4 Stars

Had it not been for a supposed error in renewing the copyright for My Man Godfrey in 1964 (one can’t blame it on the 1957 Henry Koster re-make) we might have seen a restoration of this brilliant screwball comedy earlier. It’s only been in the past few years that the studios have seen fit to restore presumed PD works, but thank the stars, Universal has seen fit to save this one!

There are probably a dozen or so truly brilliant screwball comedies, that made arrived primarily in the 1930s and early ’40s, and My Man Godfrey, by director Gregory La Cava is one of the finest.

With scans derived from extant original nitrate camera negative as well as fine grain masters, the Criterion release is literally something that I thought I’d never see.

It’s beautifully done, with perfect grain structure, black levels, and a wealth of original shadow detail. Resolution is superb.

One of the great films of its era.

Just grab a copy, and enjoy.

No further discussion, lest those who have never enjoyed the film, remain untainted.

Save to mention that the leads are William Powell and Carole Lombard.

To those who might think of stealing a rip of this disc, best not to, as this is easily identifiable, and one could get slapped with a suit for what’s the concept? Conversion?

Image – 5

Audio – 5

Pass / Fail – Pass

Upgrade from DVD – You’d better believe it!

Very Highly Recommended

RAH

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Arthur Powell

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I would argue that no other actor of Hollywood's Golden era ever had a year better than William Powell did in 1936 - My Man Godfrey, After the Thin Man, Libeled Lady, The Great Ziegfeld, and The Ex-Mrs. Bradford. Even the least of these films - arguably Bradford - is still a solid Thin Man-like film. I'm eagerly awaiting to see what Criterion and Universal have wrought with this film. Take note WAC - we need a lot more William Powell on blu!
 

Robert Crawford

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I would argue that no other actor of Hollywood's Golden era ever had a year better than William Powell did in 1936 - My Man Godfrey, After the Thin Man, Libeled Lady, The Great Ziegfeld, and The Ex-Mrs. Bradford. Even the least of these films - arguably Bradford - is still a solid Thin Man-like film. I'm eagerly awaiting to see what Criterion and Universal have wrought with this film. Take note WAC - we need a lot more William Powell on blu!
Except for "The Great Ziegfield" those other films were quick shoots between 4-7 weeks which could be edited rather quickly and released the same year.
 

TJPC

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I love this movie but will have to watch it by myself. Carol Lombards voice makes my wife wince after every sentence!
 

Malcolm R

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Glad this is coming for those that want it. Given it's PD status, it was a long shot for restoration and release. But I recall watching this a while back after reading years of praise for the film about what a great, hilarious film it is, and being disappointed. A similar thing happened with Some Like It Hot. I guess classic comedy is just not my thing.
 
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Robert Crawford

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Glad this is coming for those that want it. Given it's PD status, it was a long shot for restoration and release. But I recall watching this a while back after reading years of praise for the film about what a great, hilarious film it is, and being disappointed. A similar thing happened with Some Like It Hot. I guess classic comedy is just not my thing.
Comedy is the most subjective of all film genres due to the uniqueness of our own sense of humor. Because of that, I rarely recommend comedies unless I know a person very well and I feel confident their sense of humor is aligned with my own. In short, I'll recommend comedies to only my closest friend and perhaps my brothers.
 

PMF

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Glad this is coming for those that want it. Given it's PD status, it was a long shot for restoration and release. But I recall watching this a while back after reading years of praise for the film about what a great, hilarious film it is, and being disappointed. A similar thing happened with Some Like It Hot. I guess classic comedy is just not my thing.
Perhaps the disappointment is not within the comedies cited but, rather, from the years of praise and built-up expectations.
I have found this to be true for other genres of film, as well.
I later came to loving such lauded films upon a second viewing, after some distance was placed between folklore and letdown.
Seeing a classic film fresh and on its own terms can be tricky stuff; but re-visitations does have its rewards.
Hopefully, this will happen for you when such timings are right.
This happened to me with "Citizen Kane", "Casablanca" and "The Godfather".
Plus, before our era of "spoiler alerts", everyone seemed compelled with zeal to give away every key moment;
or, in the case of comedies, tell each and every one of their favorite jokes;
leaving little else for one to discover on their own terms.
Like I've said, once seen then put it away for a while;
for, in time, both you and the film will meet once again and the pleasures will be all yours.
 
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Arthur Powell

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Except for "The Great Ziegfield" those other films were quick shoots between 4-7 weeks which could be edited rather quickly and released the same year.
So? How does that take away from 1936 being a great year for Powell? I still contend that Powell's 1936 line-up is hard to beat.
 

Robert Crawford

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So? How does that take away from 1936 being a great year for Powell? I still contend that Powell's 1936 line-up is hard to beat.
It doesn't take away from Powell's great output of films, but just illustrates the efficiency of the studio system back then compared to how many months it takes to film movies today especially those that require enhanced technical support along with extensive film editing.
 
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Robert Crawford

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Oh - that does certainly show how effective the studio system was during that time period. My apologies to Mr. Crawford.
Apologies accepted. By the way, William Powell is a favorite actor of mine and a year doesn't go by in which I don't watch one of those "Thin Man" movies. I especially like to watch the first film around Christmas time. The 1936 film you reference is another one I like to watch due to a certain young actor
playing a rare villain role.

As to "My Man Godfrey", I just watched it again a few months ago. Another favorite Powell film of mine and one of his best. I won't be waiting for a Barnes and Noble or Criterion sale to own this Blu-ray release because I don't have the patience to wait that long to own it. It's kind of funny how Powell and one of his ex-wives can act so well in this great film just a couple of years after their divorce. I guess no hard feelings between them. I've read Powell took it hard when she died in that plane crash. He really had some tragedy in his life losing two women he loved as well as his only child, who committed suicide years later.
 
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Scott Merryfield

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I have always enjoyed William Powell in anything I've seen him in (my wife and I both love the Thin Man films), but have never seen this one. It's been added to my wish list for the next Criterion sale.
 

TJPC

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Regarding the “Thin Man” films. We all seem to notice how much smoking goes on in classic films. My wife and I are noticing also how being drunk and heavy drinking are supposed to be “hilarious” in these same movies. This seems to have gone out with Foster Brooks in our society, and is a turn off now.
 

Johnny Angell

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Regarding the “Thin Man” films. We all seem to notice how much smoking goes on in classic films. My wife and I are noticing also how being drunk and heavy drinking are supposed to be “hilarious” in these same movies. This seems to have gone out with Foster Brooks in our society, and is a turn off now.
Yes there’s a lot of drinking and smoking in older films. I think it’s important to place these movies in the context of their times and don’t allow the smoking and drinking to bother me.