Format: Amazon Watch Party
Director: Michael Curtiz
In general I think of Michael Curtiz as one of the most versatile and best directors of the Studio Era of Hollywood. This is not the movie I'd use as Exhibit A for that argument.
I don't really get it. This movie is well liked and features a cast of solid, well-known actors (I *do* include Aldo Ray in that statement. I like Nightfall). But it has a very, very strange pacing - like, a snail's pace - is not immediately or obviously terribly *funny*. And, yeah, it's a comedy. It's listed by AFI as one of the 500 funniest movies ever made, so... what the hell do I know?
But, yeah, it's about three Devil's Island prisoners (Humphrey Bogart, Aldo Ray and Peter Ustinov) who hide out in a shop/ home owned by Joan Bennett and Leo G. Carroll - and, along the way - wind up helping out the shop and solving all of their problems.
I do feel less crazy as I was not the only one watching the movie and I don't think any of us were fans of the thing.
I dunno, maybe none of us were in the mood or something - but I think something about the stageyness of the production - that they seemed to pace it as a play they hadn't quite figured out the timing for - just really impacted the watchability.
All that said - it did have one of the darkest/ most leaning on gallows humor endings to a movie I can think of from this period, and maybe that has a great deal to do with how it's been received. No idea.