Okay, I almost reviewed the remake very well. I didn't see the remake, so...
Anyway, they don't make really patriotic movies anymore. I know all you liberals out there in internet land say "f*ck patriotic movies! I'm not going to read your sh*tty reviews anymore." Calm down kids, I'm a moderate! You only can hate a moderate because you can consider him wishy-washy. But this is one of those patriotic movies like Mr. Smith Goes to Washington or anything else Frank Capra makes. Well, he didn't make this one and this one is mighty solid. It's not perfect, but it is mighty solid.
I have to comment primarily on the leading lady's accent. I know for women to be funny in film in the 1950's, they either had to be stuck up or annoying. We decided that annoying and over the top was just the way to go for this film. Yeah, I liked it, but I can't lie and say there weren't times that I was just like "enough already. Lose the accent by now, Doolittle!"
But the rest of the movie is really solid. Sure, she becomes a genius in some aspects way too fast, but she's still pretty ditsy by the end. I was actually really moved in the latter half of the film. I mean, I know its the fifties and I know that's the point of the scene, but I was just blown away by what's-his-name hitting her like that. It was like beating the sh*t out of Minnie Mouse. Yeah, she's silly and has a weird voice, but you don't beat the hell out of that. But it did its job and that was the point of the movie.
William Holden makes an odd romantic lead. He is really close to the vest and you do expect him to have some kind of hidden agenda for teaching Billie about politics besides love, but he really doesn't and that kind of threw me for a loop. I mean, sure, he's happy that she got out from this criminal organization, but that's about as far as his plan went. Really, I'm pretty sure that last part was just a fluke. But Holden does his job well and delivers a speech that is inspirational on top of other things. So that's always good. I loved the moments where he was impossibly smart and just knew everything about everything. Hell, I wanted to start reading the newspaper just to sound as smart as he was.
This really is a solid movie. I laughed a few times, but this isn't really a laugh riot kind of film. But it is more of a feel-great movie and that's what it is meant to be.