Straight to the Moon!
The Moons Our Home is one of my favourite super obscure films with only 139 users ratings on IMDB as of writing this review and a proclamation from Bill Murray as one of his favourite films (look up his appearance on the Siskel and Ebert Holiday Gift Guide 1988 In which he mentions he would like a cassette of the film for Christmas). The Moons Our Home has only recently seen its due on DVD on the Universal Vault Series although when I watched the film I had to access it though a torrent. Not the greatest image quality but as a big fan Margaret Sullavan and a Henry Fonda enthusiast I was overjoyed to get a hold of the film and was not let down in the slightest.
What surprised me about Margaret Sullavan’s performance is how much she reminded me of Jean Harlow, always changing mood within a split second while screaming and throwing tantrums from the very beginning of the movie Sullavan and Harlow are two actresses I didn’t think I would ever compare so it’s fascinating to see this aspect of her screen persona I didn’t even know existed. There is even a Hepburn-esque quality to her character of Cherry Chester with her fierce desire to be independent as well as clothing choices of a turtle neck and trousers.
Sullavan and Fonda had previously been married, making their pairing feel more tender and genuine with moments like their histrionics in the snow being as adorable as they are funny. The Moon’s Our Home also features innovative use of split screen in which Sullavan and Fonda are given half of the screen to represent different rooms in which they move in parallel and symmetrical tandem. The filmed is also carried by a fine cast of supporting players including Beulah Bondi, Margaret Hamilton and my favourite Walter Brennan as the hard of hearing justice of the peace; a brief but hysterically funny role.
It’s already a joy to discover a film I love, even more so when it’s a film that almost no one else will watch in a million years. It gives me the sense that it’s my movie. I guess this is what hipsters must feel like listening to bands no one else has heard off.