Cheaper by the Dozen

Critics Consensus

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80%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 5

66%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 59,815

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Movie Info

Based on the true story of the large Gilbreth family, this film follows Frank Gilbreth (Clifton Webb) and his wife, Lillian (Myrna Loy), as they raise their 12 children. Both renowned efficiency experts, Frank and Lillian face significant challenges in parenting such a big brood, often leading to humorous situations. Fortunately, the couple frequently receive assistance from their eldest daughter, Ann (Jeanne Crain), who often acts as a third parent to the many Gilbreth children.

Cast & Crew

Clifton Webb
Frank Bunker Gilbreth
Myrna Loy
Mrs. Lillian Gilbreth
Jeanne Crain
Ann Gilbreth
Betty Lynn
Deborah Lancaster
Barbara Bates
Ernestine Gilbreth
Sara Allgood
Mrs. Monahan
Anthony Sydes
Fred Gilbreth
Roddy McCaskill
Jack Gilbreth
Lamar Trotti
Screenwriter
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Critic Reviews for Cheaper by the Dozen

All Critics (5) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Cheaper by the Dozen

  • Dec 26, 2014
    The original "Cheaper by the Dozen" is based on the autobiography of the real Gilbreth clan, who lived in early 20th century New England. The film is queerly obsessed with the olden days, and how great they were. Headed by patriarch Frank (Webb) the family of twelve moves to another state, gets a big house, and shenanigans ensue. Tonsils are removed, makeup and heels are denigrated, there's a school dance, and a dog somehow takes residence in the home. Webb's character is supposed to be wacky yet strict, but he comes off as a loudmouth sexist. His often slut shames his daughter (Crain) who is just trying to be a normal teenage girl. He talks a lot about the virtues of marriage, the inefficiency of others, and his own warped, often outdated views, on a plethora of other subjects. I understand that this may have been the tone of family life in the twenties, but language such as this has no bearing on a family film in the early fifties. Frank is always trying to show how efficient he can make certain processes, but in the midst of it he often talks down to people and basically insults everyone's intelligence. It's a film that tries to be sweet natured, but Webb's dialogue comes off like a mean girl lecturing on morality. It comes off as fake and twisted, tarnishing any family value it tries to exact.
    Spencer S Super Reviewer
  • Oct 14, 2010
    not as good as the newer one
    erika b Super Reviewer
  • Sep 05, 2010
    An interesting family drama/comedy based on a real family, but it gets boring after a while, it could've been better.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Oct 18, 2008
    Very sweet movie, good characterization... especially with so many characters! Lots of true to life moments in real parent-child, and sibling-sibling relationships. A couple chuckles at socially awkard moments. The ending was a bit vague though.
    Dannielle A Super Reviewer

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