02 October 2006

The Parent Trap (starring Hayley Mills)


The reason we ended up with 'The Parent Trap' on our shelves is that it was on special offer in a double-pack with 'Pollyanna'. However, the latter did not much appeal to my husband, but he thought that 'The Parent Trap' sounded much more appealing.

First the negatives: it's rather twee, and feels extremely dated. It was actually made in 1961, so not quite as old as we thought; we would not have been surprised if it had been ten years earlier. Moreoever, the plot is - in the end - rather predictable. Not to mention unlikely, relying as it does on an amazing coincidence following bizarre circumstances...

To say any more would be a spoiler, although I imagine that most people interested in this movie will know at least the outline of the plot.


On the plus side, it's really a delightful feel-good story, once one accepts the 1960s twee American style of acting. The young Hayley Mills does a wonderful job, acting two girls brought up in different environments, even managing two distinct American accents. That this was done before the modern days of easy special effects is in itself a triumph of production.

Recommended as a warm family film that doesn't require much thought. There is, apparently, a 1998 remake of this film which modernises the names and situations - but many people who have seen both prefer this original. There's something special about watching a classic.

Review copyright Sue's DVD Reviews

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