The Embracing Fortitude of An Obliging AfterLife: The Kindly Ghost


One of my favorite film makers, Jules Dassin’s 1944 whimsical romp starring the always wonderful Charles Laughton as the cowardly, lovable and brooding, Sir Simon de Canterville. Also starring pixie Margaret O’Brien and Robert Young. Based on Oscar Wilde’s story of the 17th century cowardly Sir Simon who runs from a duel, only to be sealed into a room by his father who is ashamed of his son. Doomed to roam the castle until his American kin Cuffy can break the curse and set him free.


Directed by Charles Barton this haunted history lesson stars the iconic comedy duo Bud Abbott and Lou Costello with Marjorie Reynolds. Lou plays Horatio Prim. Bud Abbott plays a dual role as Dr Ralph Greenway the ancestor of Cuthbert Greenway. The beautiful Marjorie plays Melody Allen. Horatio and Melody have been condemned as traitors during the Revolutionary War, and now must try and track down a letter from George Washington proving their innocence. There is a hilarious scene with a pair of women’s under things running down the stairs scaring the bejesus out of Gale Sondergaard.


Directed by another favorite of mine Joseph L Mankiewicz and starring again, one of my all time favorite screen beauties, Gene Tierney as Mrs. Lucy Muir who moves into an old sea captain’s cottage only to find it inhabited by Captain Daniel Cregg played by the marvelously droll and often irascible Rex Harrison. This is such a poignantly well told story of a gruff and hearty love that reaches from beyond the grave.


Cary Grant and Constance Bennett (Marion and George Kerby) drive way too reckless. After realizing that they have died, they decide to have some fun with their uptight friend Cosmo Topper played by Roland Young. Directed by Norman McLeod


Another beautifully poetic haunted romance directed by yet again, a favored director of mine William Dieterle. Starring the effervescent Jennifer Jones and everyman actor Joseph Cotten. Jones plays Jennie Appleton and Cotten is Eben Adams the struggling painter she inspires. Great performances by Ethel Barrymore,Lillian Gish and Cecil Kellaway. Is Jennie real or merely a dream?



3 thoughts on “The Embracing Fortitude of An Obliging AfterLife: The Kindly Ghost

  1. “Portrait of Jennie” is a GEM of a film that is so often ignored! Whether or not she’s real doesn’t matter, as she’s so gorgeous. thank you for reminding me of the “Ghost and Mrs. Muir”. I haven’t seen it since I was a child! It’s going on my list of films to watch. No one makes ghost story films like the old b&w films used to. Fascinating blog you have here (even though it takes my Web browser a long time to load each page).


    1. Hey there- thanks for stopping by the drive in with all your comments. I appreciate it greatly. Portrait of Jennie IS such a gem. haunting and romantic in a very inspiring way. Did you get a chance to watch Ghost and Mrs Muir yet? I promise it won’t disappoint. Gene Tierney’s beautiful performance will break your heart in this film. It’s also a gem. PS: I think I’ve tackled the problem with the page taking so long to load. I hope it won’t hinder you from coming back and visiting from time to time. – Joey (MonsterGirl)


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