The Bishop’s Wife (1947)

A misnomer title if ever there was one. A great Christmas romance-comedy classic starring Cary Grant as a kind, perfect angel, David Niven as a troubled, jealous bishop trying to build his dream cathedral, and Loretta Young as the bishop’s innocent wife who the angel becomes involved with. Monty Woolley has a nice supporting role as a professor-friend of the bishop and his wife,¬†who has let his dream history book project languish. Gleason also has a fine supporting role as a cab driver who relearns how to skate and recovers his inner child. Indeed, the skating scene is good fun and there are some simple special effects to add humor to a nicely-done script by Robert E. Sherwood. Henry Koster’s direction is light, playful, and delightful. A truly charming comedy with none of the vulgarity or stupidity that ruins most comedies made today. Best seen in the original, uncolorized, atmospheric black and white version. Easily as great a Christmas film as the more melodramatic It’s a Wonderful Life.

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