Review: ‘My Little Chickadee’

Universal catches Mae West on a delayed rebound from Paramount, teaming her with W.C. Fields for a hefty package of lusty humor. Picture marks return of West to the screen after two years absence.

Universal catches Mae West on a delayed rebound from Paramount, teaming her with W.C. Fields for a hefty package of lusty humor. Picture marks return of West to the screen after two years absence.

The familiar Westian swagger, drawl, wisecracks and innuendos are all included, likewise the typical Fields routines and quick-triggered comments. Sequences in which the pair work together are reduced to a minimum. Script setup is a continual series of episodes, first with West and then Fields.

Story is a reverse twist to Destry Rides Again and with western frontier locale, is reminiscent of Destry. West, returning from a complete course in a Chicago dance hall, has a way with men. A masked bandit falls in love with her, which eventually drums her out of the town. Meeting Fields, whom she believes rich, aboard the train, she promotes a fake marriage ceremony. Pair hit the next frontier settlement, where Fields is inducted into job of sheriff, and West tosses her charms around rather freely.

My Little Chickadee has been turned in on a moderate budget compared to outlays for the West starrers previously under the Paramount banner.

My Little Chickadee

Production

Universal. Director Edward Cline; Producer [Lester Cowan]; Screenplay Mae West, W.C. Fields; Camera Joseph Valentine; Editor Edward Curtiss; Music Frank Skinner; Art Director Jack Otterson, Martin Obzina

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1940. Running time: 83 MIN.

With

Mae West W.C. Fields Joseph Calleia Dick Foran Ruth Donnelly Magaret Hamilton
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