18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thirties classic
When people think of Frank Capra the film that normally pops into their head is "It's a Wonderful Life". Capra however made many wonderful films and none better than this made during his most productive period.
You Can't Take it With You gained Capra his third and final Oscar as best Director. It's a Wonderful Life made eight years later gained him a nomination but...
Published on 4 Jan 2010 by Peter Moore
3 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars i was extremely disappointed by you cant take it with you
Unfortunately the basic problem with this film is that the storyline is boring. The other problem with this film is when at times it livens up the characters become zany, bizarre but in no way comedic.
Published on 7 April 2002
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thirties classic,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)When people think of Frank Capra the film that normally pops into their head is "It's a Wonderful Life". Capra however made many wonderful films and none better than this made during his most productive period.
You Can't Take it With You gained Capra his third and final Oscar as best Director. It's a Wonderful Life made eight years later gained him a nomination but he lost out to William Wyler for "The Best Years of Our Lives".
You Can't Take it With You is funny, touching, beautifully acted by a sumptuous ensemble cast and above all it espouses the sort of values that many of us wish we could live by but rarely do. It's a film that transcends the ages, I watched it recently with my elderly parents, aged 85 & 87 and my grandson, aged 13. We all laughed, cried and enjoyed every minute of it. If you get an opportunity then see this film, it will leave you feeling that the world isn't such a bad place after all.
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A difficult one,
Despite it's age this film has a lot to say about our modern long hours in the office culture and how we're losing sight of the more important things in life (friendship and family). That might sound like modern Hollywood cheesiness but in truth such concepts were handled much more intelligently in those days and I didn't find myself cringeing once.
If you liked "It's a wonderful life" then you'll probably like this too. It's in that kind of vein.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First Frank Capra - Jimmy Stewart classic,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)This is a movie version of another successful play on Broadway performed during 1936-1938 season. Frank Capra received the best director award from the Academy in recognition of his superb work, and the film also won in the best movie category.
During the post-depression era, Hollywood was obsessed with making movies that poked at the rich and famous, especially those who lived lavishly through banking and investments in stock market, some of whom were responsible for economic depression, and large scale unemployment that followed. There is a long list of movies casting some of the best from Hollywood, and Jimmy Stewart and Lionel Barrymore are two players who have made such movies. This is a comedy-drama of two families pitted against each other during the post-depression years (1938). One is poor, down to earth eccentric family; and another, a rich family who are concerned about their wealth and social status. Lionel Barrymore offers a brilliant performance as Grandpa Martin Vanderhof, as the head of a poor family, and Jean Arthur offers another splendid performance as his grand daughter Alice Sycamore, who is independent, with her own mind and in love with a rich young man, named Tony Kirby (Jimmy Stewart). Penny does not think much of the differences in their social status, and so is Tony, but when his parents meet Vanderhof's extended family, things turn into a very ugly surprise, and they all end of in jail!
The members of Vanderhof family are a strange bunch of characters with peculiar hobbies and interests. Grandpa Vanderhof doesn't believe in paying income taxes to IRS, and his only daughter, Penny Sycamore (Spring Byington), a lovable, down-to-earth character writes unpublished plays, and her husband Paul Sycamore (Samuel Hinds) experiments with fireworks often with mild explosions: All these consequences taken with a smile and humor! Adorable Ann Miller plays the second grand daughter Essie Carmichael who aspires to be a ballerina, and her husband Ed Carmichael (Dub Taylor) plays xylophone.
When Anthony Kirby (Edward Arnold) buys out dozens of buildings for a new factory in the Vanderhof's neighborhood, Grandpa refuses to sell his home, but later he decides to leave his home. In the mean time, Tony after losing Alice, who is staying her relatives in Connecticut, quits his job at his father's corporation, and Mr. Kirby begins to wonder if his life is really is empty, and if he really has true friends. In the end all ends well after some fine drama in the court.
My favorite scenes in the film are; when Tony proposes to Alice indirectly, when he says, "Scratch hard enough and you'll find a proposal," and when they start dancing with the neighborhood kids and start running when the neighborhood cop shows up. The most hilarious scene is when the house catches fire when fire crackers accidentally ignite, and in the next scene they all will be in jail. George Kaufman and Moss Hart wrote this film, and their fine work was honored with a nod from the Academy during the nominating process in the best writing category. Another interesting story is that during this film, Lionel Barrymore experienced the effects of arthritis and director Capra had his leg put in a cast and made him walk on crutches, which I thought was a nice touch. Screenwriter Robert Riskin also created a new character for the film, Mr. Poppins (Donald Meek), who becomes a permanent house guest of Vanderhof's family after quitting his job at a printing shop, and pursue his dream of making toys and masks. Director Frank Capra is a master of making movies in which a little guy stand up against the big in the society, and eventually win: This is evident in some of his most successful movies. It is also a bit of change in the direction of his cast, because in Capra's wildly successful Christmas classic, It's a wonderful life, Barrymore is the wealthy banker who tries to take advantage of Jimmy Stewart's character during his financial turmoil. It is nice to see Barrymore plays an adorable old man. This film was James Stewart's first and Jean Arthur's second film with Frank Capra. The following year, they would do their second and last film together, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. As all fans know that there is always a powerful message hidden in all Capra movies and the take-home message in this film is that you can't take your wealth with you, but you can always have the love and warmth of a loving family and good friends.
1. Jimmy Stewart Signature Collection [DVD]  [US Import]
2. It's A Wonderful Life [DVD] 
3. Mr Deeds Goes To Town [DVD] 
4. The Frank Capra Collection - Feat: It's A Wonderful Life (4 Disc Box Set) [DVD]
5. Dinner at Eight [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heartwarming family drama - money doesn't replace love!,
By A Customer
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Can't Take It With You,
By A Customer
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rivetting!,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)If you like Its a Wonderful Life you cannot fail to find this film irresistable. Capra-corn at its most delightful and meaningful.......Long may he shine
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars So what good is it,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)Frank Capra tries out eccentricity for size in the enchanting "You Can't Take it With You," a movie all about doing whatever makes you happy, not rich. While he's not quite in his element here (this is supposed to be really weird?), the talented cast and heartwarming message make this a truly enchanting, sweet movie.
Megamogul Kirby (Edward Arnold) has bought out dozens of buildings for a new factory -- only one eccentric family refuse to sell their family house. What he doesn't know is that his dissatisfied son Tony (James Stewart) is madly in love with Alice Sycamore (Jean Arthur), the daughter of the family. And now they're engaged.
When Tony shows up to meet the future in-laws, he finds ballet in the kitchen, fireworks in the basement, and genial patriarch Grandpa Vanderhof (Lionel Barrymore ) ruling the house. But though he loves the way the Vanderhof clan lives, Tony isn't prepared for how his wealthy parents will react to them -- or how they will all be arrested. Wll the Vanderhofs lose their carefree way of life?
Frank Capra tried hard, but he was better at sentimentality than eccentricity. He just doesn't seem to know what a weird familoy looks like. Leave that to Wes Anderson. What makes this movie so enchanting is what Grandpa says in the jail cell: "You can't take it with you, Mr. Kirby. So what good is it? As near as I can see, the only thing you can take with you is the love of your friends."
That enchanting message rules the story, where the Vanderhofs devote time to art, food, fun and friendship. Capra introduces us to them through a timid clerk who decides "I'm a lily!" and follows Grandpa home. Before long, he's joined the pack and is happily making fireworks.
The film takes a darker turn in the last quarter, when the Vanderhofs appear to be leaving, Tony has lost Alice and soon quits his job, and Mr. Kirby begins to wonder if his moneyed, powerful life really is empty -- and if he really doesn't have any friends. But don't expect the free-spirited Vanderhofs to be squashed by a corporate president, no matter how powerful he is.
This was the first of Capra's collaborations with James Stewart, and Stewart is a bright spot in a stellar cast of solid, memorable actors. His Tony is unspoiled and sweet, and he longs to be part of a loving family. Barrymore does a stellar performance as the kindly Grandpa, who hides the poignant reason why he will never leave the house.
"You Can't Take It With You" will leave you longing to become a lily of the valley, and remind you of what is truly important. The eccentricity doesn't fit as it could, but the bright, magical story makes up for that.
5.0 out of 5 stars ONE OF MY FAVORITE,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL MOVIE, IT IS UPLIFTING MOVIE, YOU MUST WATCH IT WHEN YOU ARE IN A BAD MOOD
AND SEE THE DIFFERENCE
5.0 out of 5 stars Very sweet movie,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)Very sweet story, with excellent actors.
Indeed it's a worth Oscar winning. I don't know the others nominated in 1938, but I believe that none is better than this.
4.0 out of 5 stars And You Can't Hit the Right Note All the Time,
This review is from: You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  (DVD)Sound and picture quality are not brilliant but acceptable. Apart from that, the preachiness which is always part of the classic Capras isn't really kept in check here and has to count as a failing. There are times when it seems as if it's going to be a real indictment of rapacious capitalism but it can't quite bring itself to be that because apart from the background bankers surrounding the great Edward Arnold's Kirby pere, and the few dodgy cops on the make, it's determined to believe there's good in everybody. And what's wrong with that, I suppose. However, there are other issues including an uneven peformance from James Stewart: one minute cookie, another knowing, another lovelorn and another trying for the poignant. The fault is probably not all his. Jean Arthur tries hard. Lionel Barrymore holds it together and there are some great moments such as the courtroom scene where the judge is a real old Capracorny guy and worth praise - he and Lionel would clearly have hit it off. You can't really not like it but it has dated worse than the other big Capras and there is still the failure to have the black servants sitting around the table at dinner - though they are allowed to inhabit the same room for some of the time. That would have been the leap of faith which really would have given it some social conscience - they must have discussed it and decided, no, they can stay in the kitchen when it comes to sitting down to celebrate.
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You Can't Take It With You [DVD]  by Frank Capra (DVD - 2003)