Heaven Can Wait | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

Heaven Can Wait 

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Ernst Lubitsch's only completed film in Technicolor (1943), the greatest of his late films, offers a rosy, meditative, and often very funny view of an irrepressible ladies' man (Don Ameche in his prime) presenting his life in retrospect to the devil (Laird Cregar). Like a good deal of Lubitsch from The Merry Widow on, it's about death as well as personal style, but rarely has the subject been treated with such affection for the human condition. Samson Raphaelson's script is very close to perfection, the sumptuous period sets are a delight, and the secondary cast--Gene Tierney, Charles Coburn, Marjorie Main, Eugene Pallette, and Spring Byington--is wonderful. In many respects, this is Lubitsch's testament, full of grace, wisdom, and romance. 112 min. A 35-millimeter print will be shown. Also on the program: When Hell Froze Over (1926), a Mutt and Jeff cartoon by Budd Fisher. LaSalle Theatre.

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