1931-1940ComedyGarson KaninRomanceScrewball ComedyUSA

Garson Kanin – Bachelor Mother (1939)


Polly Parrish, a clerk at Merlin’s Department Store, is mistakenly presumed to be the mother of a foundling. Outraged at Polly’s unmotherly conduct, David Merlin becomes determined to keep the single woman and “her” baby together.

Rogers is superb as the brassy lady from the Bronx in this comedy of mistaken identity and parenthood, in which a young shopgirl is forced by her employers (Coburn as the department store owner, Niven as his urbanely flustered, eligible son) into becoming foster-mother to an abandoned child. It’s a hilarious, snappy, loose-jointed comedy in the best Hollywood tradition, but the script and direction by Kanin have an intelligence and sense of irony which raise provocative question after provocative question – about the role of women as workers, mothers, and mistresses; about male hypocrisy. A salutary reminder that Sirk wasn’t the only ‘subversive’ to burrow his way into the woodwork of tinsel city.
— Timeout.



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