Some 97 minutes of well-farced escapism is offered in Susan Slept Here. Romantic comedy is imaginatively developed, brightly trouped under Frank Tashlin’s smart direction most of the way. Alex Gottlieb script, based on Gottlieb-Steve Fisher play [Susan], involves Hollywood writer Dick Powell with juve delinquent Debbie Reynolds in sort of May-October romantic affair.
Tashlin handling, and players, score strongest in scenes played strictly for pantomime. One sure laugh getter scene is Powell watching old movie he dialoged on television. Other has Debbie watching home movies, grimacing cattily at love rival Anne Francis.
Some of material approaches frankness of Moon Is Blue. Some chuckles are sly type since battle-of-sexes stuff is open to assorted interpretations. For [Production] Code purposes, Debbie remains pure through all (her delinquency only that of being left homeless by mother gone off to remarry), she manages to spoil Francis’ courtship of Powell and gets him for herself.
1954: Nominations: Best Song (‘Hold My Hand’), Sound