The Roan Group has reached into its vault once again and pulled out
an amusing romantic comedy, Three Guys Named Mike. This 1951
vehicle Jane Wyman has the actress staring as an airline stwerdess who can't
choose between the three men she's dating, all named Mike of course. It is
a rather amusing film and though there aren't a lot of big laughs, it's
still a lot of fun. Roan has once again done a splendid job on the
DVD, presenting the movie with a clean audio track and a very good picture.
Perky and bubbly Marcy Lewis (Jane Wyman) leaves her small rural town
in search of her dream: to become an airline hostess (that's what flight
attendants were called before they were called stewardess.) Her inquisitive
nature gets her into a bit of trouble, but her charming personality and
winning smile always seem to get her out of it.
On various flights Marcy encounters a trio of men named Mike: Mike the
pilot (Howard Keel), Mike Lawrence (Van Johnson) the aging grad student,
and Mike Tracy (Barry Sullivan) the advertising executive. She starts
dating all three, when she's in their towns, and though Marcy looks at
is as innocent fun, the three suitors get rather jealous of each other
once they discover that there's more than one man in her life. All
three make a play for her, but which one will Marcy choose?
This is a fun, light film. Though it was co-written by Sidney
Sheldon, who also wrote the delightful The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer
a few years earlier, the witty dialog and snappy jokes of that film are
missing. This film relies more on the situation and Wyman's screen
presence more than anything else, and it succeeds because of it.
Wyman does a great job, treating each mishap and spot of trouble with a
breezy attitude that is rather infectious. It's easy to see how these
guys could all fall for such a charming person.
The other three stars don't really add much to the movie. This
film isn't about them, it's about Marcy, and they come across as rather
flat characters. Each has a slightly different personality and something
different to offer Marcy, but they really don't seem well rounded.
One of the fun things about this film is the way they show airline travel
back in the 1950's, and the limited career options woman had at the time.
At one point they mention the Kiwi Club, a group of flight hostesses who
had gotten married. Like the bird the club was named after, they
couldn't fly anymore. Partially filmed on a real DC-8,the plane
actually looked much more comfortable than today's larger jets. The
seats were bigger and the cabin was much less crowded. It was also
fun to see the passengers walk across the tarmac and climb up the built
in stair to get on the plane.
There were some notable actors playing bit parts too. Barbara
Billingsley (June Cleaver in Leave it to Beaver) plays an instructor
early in the film, and popular bit player Percy Helton also makes an apprearance.
The two channel mono soundtrack was very good. The audio wasn't
very clean without any hiss or background noise that often plagues films
from this era. The dialog is easy hear even above the roar of the
propellers, and though the sound isn't very dynamic, it fits the movie
The full frame black and white image was very clear and crisp.
The print used was in superb condition, with only one or two print defects.
The contrast was very good, and the level of detail was excellent.
The only problem with the video was a fair amount of aliasing that marred
an otherwise fine presentation.
Michael Young, Provost of the New York Film Academy, provides a three
minute introduction to the film on very bad digital video. Aside
from giving some history on the stars and a synopsis of the film itself,
he doesn't really have much to say.
There are also three clips from other movies that Roan has released
as well as the ever present Radiation March.
This was a fun, if unexciting film. Like many films of the early
50's, it was predictable but still light and amusing. Jane Wyman
really makes the picture, but it was also fun to see how air travel was
accomplished at the time. Roan did a very good job in presenting
this film, making a DVD that has very good sound and video quality.
That makes this disc easy to Recommend.