The second film I elected to watch for my fifty film month challenge is It Happened One Night, one of only three films to win the ‘Big 5’ at the Oscars. The Big 5 being Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Actress and obviously Best Picture. I therefore went into the film with reasonably high expectations and was not disappointed.

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The films story begins as a somewhat obvious one. A spoilt rich girl (Caludette Colbert) runs away from her father and finds herself thrown into the arms of a poor slacker (Clark Gable); for the first fifteen minutes I was annoyed that a film with such an obvious plot could be rated so highly however when the film gets going it is truly magnificent with some brilliant writing and some of the best chemistry I have seen on film between the two leads.


Clark Gable is fantastic in his role as a wisecracking reporter who talks himself up for more than is and rather interestingly his performance in this film supposedly became the inspiration for Bugs Bunny. Claudette Colbert is also wonderful as a spoilt brat and the way in which the two bounce off of each other is spectacular.

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The best moments in the film come from the script however with a series of one liners that are not only hilarious but also a scathing satire on society and work incredibly well; the characters all flow into each other and act as expected making it almost entirely believable that the film could happen with the ending being the only part that is a little too far-fetched.


The film is a fantastic example of cinema and fully deserving of all its accolades. The scoring goes as follows:

Story 4/5

Style 4/5

Technical 5/5

Enjoyment 5/5


This gives the film an aggregated score of 9/10.