The Wonderful Pulitzer Prize Play... becomes one of the Great Motion Pictures of our Time!
Some people just need to brighten up. A spot of sunshine upon their day. Today's entry takes a bite from the past to serve up a sampling of humor and drama, in a way that it sometimes feel's like only an older movie can do. As to whether you'll laugh so hard you'll be seeing things or if your old invisible friend will make fun of you for watching it, only the movie will tell.
I really didn't lie there in the start - I don't know what it is about these older movies, but they seem to have a certain blend of "cheerful" that just doesn't seem to get emulated all that often in the modern cineme-scape. Probably has something to do with the modern audience wanting that gritty and dark wheelhouse or whatever - although we have gotten some nice humorous gems for sure. Here, the movie delivers that upbeat atmosphere and never manages to really create any sort of feeling of danger or suddenly super serious tone - I mean, it's a movie about a man and his "invisible six foot tall rabbit friend" - there really doesn't need to be any Donny Darko levels of darkness in here.
The musical soundtrack and queues help to add to this cheerful atmosphere, being rather upbeat. I'd argue that like many soundtracks, it doesn't get into the earworm headspace, but sometimes (if not usually) I probably fail to mention that isn't a bad thing - it does it's job of adding to the movie without overpowering it, and indeed helps keep you in that good mood. The actors line deliveries also help in regards to audio, being understandable and comical when they need too, but each having it's own personality. There is a scene where two folks are whispering over the phone, and it can be hard to understand what they are saying (although I'm honestly suspicious that it's one of those "rabble rabble rabble" situations where it's meant to be), but at the same time that's part of the comedy that's going on for that scene. Sound effects likewise don't stand out too heavy outside of an occasional alarm - mind you that's just to say they aren't overpowering anything else going on volume-wise, although largely there isn't any "abnormal" sound effects either.
The actors themselves do a good job as well. Our main character feels like the kind of person that would just be pleasant to sit down and talk to, even if he does have a big old friend you can't see. Even then, the interplay between characters is also handled nicely - whereas one person might see another as a monster, another might see them as very attractive. It's also fun to see how the character views on each other slowly alter as they have more and more interaction with the main character. There are occasionally characters being introduced that don't have much importance to the plot - but they do at the very least serve as a way to see more about how the main character exists as a person, which is largely probably the most pleasant person in the movie, or to service something that may come up later on.
In the visual department, there isn't largely much to talk about. Costumes are all rather fitting of the time and characters - although "fantasy" is in the genre tags, it's more a modern (at the time) thing with fantasy in the sense that a giant Celtic invisible talking rabbit may or may not exist. Of course, the luck of having an invisible rabbit is that it doesn't require anything shown on screen. The lack of color doesn't hurt the movie or anything - although I'm sure there are people who don't find black and white films attractive compared to the smorgasbord of colors available today. and they will find it a negative. There are a few "moving on it's own" tricks here and there, mostly towards the end of the movie, and none of them look particularly bad - but anyone specifically looking for something effects-heavy is looking in the wrong place.
Comedy, as always, is subjective. I would argue that at the very least most who would view this movie would at the least get the continual feeling of joy or "good mood" that the film kicks off regardless of how much they actually find it funny though. Oddly enough, the two aren't always hand-in-hand. There's a bit of slapstick in there, although most of the humor comes from the context of an imaginary rabbit - thing's like people's reactions to someone talking to nothing. There's also that appeal of the old-timey senses with that over-the-top stage acting of one character, which is rather reminiscent to me of Arsenic and Old Lace. Personally, I didn't find myself consistently laughing out loud while watching, although it may have gotten a "guffaw" over an early example of the slapstick and I was entertained and in a good mood the entire movie.
The overall pacing is also similar to things I would expect when I watch something in black and white that has comedy attached. It's not breakneck, but keeps a consistent pace going. Things at time will escalate quickly - largely due to the comedy I feel - but even then the pace itself always feels like a constant series of steps sauntering along. There really isn't much to be lost or confused by, with the only real large question ever posed being "is the rabbit real?" - as largely only one character seems to believe so at the start.
In the long run, this is a fun movie. I'm not even gonna lie, the reason it's on here is because my comrade (who you haven't heard from here in quite some time) actually told me I need to check it out some time after it came up in one of our conversations and I mentioned I hadn't seen it. I enjoyed my time with it, being largely entertained and kept in a good mood throughout. The movie does have a remake that I have not seen - so when searching for it, specifically if this piece has made you want to check it out, you may want to include the year. This is a nice one that's actually relatively family friendly as well - although parents should, as usual, always check out if it's appropriate for your own kids. The only things that really need to be worried about is probably a bit about the treatment of a patient that comes up, but largely the movie is pretty harmless as far as anything else (language, violence, sex) lacking mostly all of them. Check it out sometime if you just want to have a good time and maybe get in a better mood.