You Can’t Take It with You

Alice, the only relatively normal member of the eccentric Sycamore family, falls in love with Tony Kirby, but his wealthy banker father and snobbish mother strongly disapprove of the match. When the Kirbys are invited to dinner to become better acquainted with their future in-laws, things don’t turn out the way Alice had hoped.
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Credits: TheMovieDb.

Film Cast:

  • Alice Sycamore: Jean Arthur
  • Tony Kirby: James Stewart
  • Grandpa Martin Vanderhof: Lionel Barrymore
  • Anthony P. Kirby: Edward Arnold
  • Boris Kolenkhov: Mischa Auer
  • Essie Carmichael: Ann Miller
  • Penny Sycamore: Spring Byington
  • Paul Sycamore: Samuel S. Hinds
  • Mr. Poppins: Donald Meek
  • Mr. Ramsey: H.B. Warner
  • Mr. DePinna: Halliwell Hobbes
  • Ed Carmichael: Dub Taylor
  • Mrs. Anthony P. Kirby: Mary Forbes
  • Rheba: Lillian Yarbo
  • Donald: Eddie ‘Rochester’ Anderson
  • John Blakely: Clarence Wilson
  • Professor: Josef Swickard
  • Maggie O’Neill: Ann Doran
  • Schmidt: Christian Rub
  • Mrs. Schmidt: Bodil Rosing
  • Henderson: Charles Lane
  • Judge: Harry Davenport
  • Henry – the Head Waiter (uncredited): Irving Bacon
  • Mike – the Detective (uncredited): Ward Bond
  • Chief Detective (uncredited): James Burke
  • Plainclothes Policeman (uncredited): Eddy Chandler
  • Miss Jones – Blakely’s Secretary (uncredited): Anne Cornwall
  • Blakely’s Inquisitive Office Worker (uncredited): Nell Craig
  • Bill – Plainclothes Policeman (uncredited): Edgar Dearing
  • Police Guard at Courtroom Entrance (uncredited): Pat Flaherty
  • Lord Melville (uncredited): Robert Greig
  • Inmate Wearing Black Cap (uncredited): Kit Guard
  • Kirby’s Dining Guest (uncredited): John Hamilton
  • Court Attendant (uncredited): Edward Hearn
  • Kirby’s Attorney (uncredited): Russell Hicks
  • Board Member (uncredited): Edward Keane
  • Inmate (uncredited): Pert Kelton
  • Kirby’s Attorney (uncredited): Edwin Maxwell
  • Restaurant Patron (uncredited): Frank McLure
  • Guard (uncredited): Charles McMurphy
  • Policeman (uncredited): James Millican
  • Neighbor Helping with Move (uncredited): Edward Peil Sr.
  • Kirby’s Secretary (uncredited): Ian Wolfe
  • Bobby (uncredited): Eugene Anderson Jr
  • Attorney to Kirby at Arraignment (uncredited): Stanley Andrews
  • Reporter (uncredited): William Arnold
  • Kirby’s Office Aide (uncredited): Johnny Arthur
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Frank Austin
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Harry A. Bailey
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Joseph E. Bernard
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Beatrice Blinn
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Charles Brinley
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Beatrice Curtis
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Betty Farrington
  • Neighbor (uncredited): John Ince
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Stella LeSaint
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Margaret Mann
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Tina Marshall
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Eva McKenzie
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Fred Parker
  • Neighbor (uncredited): George C. Pearce
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Ed Randolph
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Frances Raymond
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Bert Starkey
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Dorothy Vernon
  • Neighbor (uncredited): Bess Wade
  • Mary (uncredited): Gladys Blake
  • Taxi Driver (uncredited): Joe Bordeaux
  • Restaurant Patron (uncredited): Ralph Brooks
  • Newsboy (uncredited): Stanley Brown
  • Child Dancer (uncredited): Gloria Browne
  • Bill Hughes (uncredited): Wallis Clark
  • Hammond (uncredited): Chester Clute
  • Barber (uncredited): Nick Copeland
  • Strongarm Man (uncredited): Dick Curtis
  • Trustee (uncredited): Sidney D’Albrook
  • Reporter (uncredited): Lew Davis
  • Reporter (uncredited): Lester Dorr
  • Reporter (uncredited): Jack Gardner
  • Reporter (uncredited): William Lally
  • Reporter (uncredited): Gene Morgan
  • Expressman (uncredited): Vernon Dent
  • Woman (uncredited): Kay Deslys
  • Woman (uncredited): Florence Dudley
  • Woman (uncredited): Almeda Fowler
  • Woman (uncredited): Alice Keating
  • Woman (uncredited): Georgia O’Dell
  • Woman (uncredited): Dagmar Oakland
  • Woman (uncredited): Rosemary Theby
  • Man (uncredited): Homer Dickenson
  • Man (uncredited): Oliver Eckhardt
  • Man (uncredited): Sterrett Ford
  • Man (uncredited): Jesse Graves
  • Man (uncredited): Louis King
  • Man (uncredited): Bob Kortman
  • Man (uncredited): Ralph McCullough
  • Man (uncredited): Clive Morgan
  • Man (uncredited): Cy Schindell
  • Man (uncredited): Harry Semels
  • Man (uncredited): Ernest Shields
  • Man at Jail (uncredited): S.S. Simon
  • Man (uncredited): Victor Travis
  • Child Dancer (uncredited): Roland Dupree
  • Bank Manager (uncredited): Edward Earle
  • Police Sergeant (uncredited): Jim Farley
  • Worried Neighbor (uncredited): Eddie Fetherston
  • Jailer (uncredited): James Flavin
  • Kirby’s Assistant (uncredited): Byron Foulger
  • Bank Clerk (uncredited): Dick French
  • Bank Clerk (uncredited): Carlton Griffin
  • Bank Guard (uncredited): Dick Rush
  • Bank Clerk (uncredited): Bruce Sidney
  • Bank Clerk (uncredited): Harry Stafford
  • Bank Clerk (uncredited): Carlie Taylor
  • Child Dancer (uncredited): Joe Geil
  • Child Dancer (uncredited): Billy Wolfstone
  • Guard (uncredited): Chuck Hamilton
  • Ice Man (uncredited): Oscar ‘Dutch’ Hendrian
  • Doorman (uncredited): Harry Hollingsworth
  • Office Manager (uncredited): Paul Irving
  • Attorney to Kirby at Arraignment (uncredited): Boyd Irwin
  • Attorney to Kirby (uncredited): Eddie Kane
  • Trustee (uncredited): Frank Mills
  • Policeman in Park (uncredited): Bruce Mitchell
  • Diner (uncredited): Wedgwood Nowell
  • Matron (uncredited): Blanche Payson
  • Bailiff (uncredited): Lee Phelps
  • Lady Melville (uncredited): Hilda Plowright
  • Mrs. Leach (uncredited): Doris Rankin
  • Court Policeman (uncredited): Ky Robinson
  • Mac (uncredited): Frank Shannon
  • Drunk (uncredited): C.L. Sherwood
  • Executive (uncredited): Edwin Stanley
  • Court Bailiff (uncredited): Bert Stevens
  • Kirby’s Dining Guest (uncredited): Laura Treadwell
  • Strongarm Man (uncredited): John Tyrrell
  • Governor Leach (uncredited): Walter Walker
  • Attorney to Kirby (uncredited): Pierre Watkin
  • Expressman (uncredited): Pat West
  • Kirby’s Secretary (uncredited): Larry Wheat
  • Russian General in Jail (uncredited): Alex Woloshin
  • Martin’s Neighbor in Courtroom: Bess Flowers

Film Crew:

  • Producer: Frank Capra
  • Music: Dimitri Tiomkin
  • Director of Photography: Joseph Walker
  • Scenario Writer: Robert Riskin
  • Art Direction: Stephen Goosson
  • Editor: Gene Havlick
  • Theatre Play: Moss Hart
  • Art Department Coordinator: Lionel Banks
  • Music: Morris Stoloff
  • Orchestrator: George Parrish
  • Sound Editor: Edward Bernds
  • Still Photographer: Irving Lippman
  • Writer: George S. Kaufman
  • Costume Design: Bernard Newman
  • Costume Design: Irene
  • Dialogue: Charles C. Coleman
  • Assistant Director: Arthur S. Black Jr.
  • Orchestrator: Max Reese
  • Sound Recordist: Garry A. Harris
  • Makeup Artist: William Knight

Movie Reviews:

  • barrymost: If you enjoy this review, please check out my blog, Old Hat Cinema, at https://oldhatcinema.medium.com/ for more reviews and other cool content.

    A heartwarming film from start to finish

    My favorite movie is Frank Capra’s 1938 Best Picture winner, You Can’t Take It with You. Okay, honestly I have a good twenty favorite movies. But this one ranks above them all. Why? Because I love the feel, the message, the theme inherent in the plot. Put very simply, it is this: life is too short to waste it in the pursuit of wealth, which ultimately brings no happiness. It makes infinitely more sense to spend it bringing joy into your own life, and the lives of those around you. Why, you might ask, do you need to spend over two hours watching a movie just to hear this idea reiterated? Because, I would answer, the journey, from the opening scenes of a day in the life of a wealthy Wall Street banker to the final scene of saying grace before supper, is just so much fun – good, clean, heartwarming fun, at that. Also, there is the not inconsiderable merit of Mr. Lionel Barrymore playing the harmonica and railing against the “isms” of the world.

    Under Capra’s expert direction, a mix of acting talents so perfect the cast must have been blessed from above, comes together to create one of the most down-to-earth, enjoyable, and hilarious screwball comedies of all time. Oh, but be warned: the firecrackers do tend to go off with a real bang from time to time.

    It’s the story of Alice Sycamore, a relatively normal young woman – normal considering she comes from an offbeat clan of free spirits, including her grandfather Martin Vanderhof, her aspiring playwright mother Penny, and one old gentleman who came to deliver the ice one day and never left. She’s a secretary for the son of banking magnate Anthony P. Kirby, and she falls in love with the boss’s son – or rather, with the back of his head, as she tells him herself. But the horribly sane, dull world of Anthony Kirby, Jr. isn’t so well-suited to the topsy-turvy, go-with-the-flow lifestyle adopted by Alice’s family. The rest of the film deals with the juxtaposition of the two very different ideals and lifestyles, and whether or not Alice and Tony can find happiness together.

    Some ridicule this film as an over-the-top fantasy slamming work ethic and responsibility, and making the rich look like poor fools. While it’s true that life can’t always be as simple and beautiful as it is for the fictional Vanderhof family, it’s a gentle reminder of what’s really important in life, and how we need to take the time to live in the moment, sometimes even with joyous abandon, and never forget to have some fun.

    Consider the Vanderhof family this way: each person seen as a unique individual; free to do whatever it is they want to do most; never overlooked; never judged; but always loved. I like to think that almost every person secretly, somewhere deep down inside, would want to live that way. I know I would.

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