Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

1936

Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

Critics Consensus

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89%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 19

86%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 9,217
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Mr. Deeds Goes to Town Photos

Movie Info

When a car crash ends the life of a fabulously wealthy patron of the arts, the decedent's $20,000,000 fortune is inherited by one Longfellow Deeds. When Deeds is convinced to move to New York, hard-boiled newspaper reporter Babe Bennett is dispatched to get the inside scoop on "The Cinderella Man."

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Cast

Gary Cooper
as Longfellow Deeds
Jean Arthur
as Babe Bennett
Ruth Donnelly
as Mabel Dawson
Lionel Stander
as Cornelius Cobb
Margaret Matzenauer
as Madame Pomponi
H.B. Warner
as Judge Walker
Warren Hymer
as Bodyguard
Muriel Evans
as Theresa
Emma Dunn
as Mrs. Meredith
Wryley Birch
as Psychiatrist
Wyrley Birch
as Psychiatrist
Arthur Hoyt
as Budington
Stanley Andrews
as James Cedar
Pierre Watkin
as Arthur Cedar
John Wray
as Farmer
Jameson Thomas
as Mr. Semple
Mayo Methot
as Mrs. Semple
Margaret Seddon
as Jane Faulkner
Margaret McWade
as Amy Faulkner
Russell Hicks
as Dr. Malcolm
Edward J. Le Saint
as Dr. Fosdick
Edward Gargan
as 2nd Bodyguard
Paul Hurst
as 1st Deputy
Paul Porcasi
as Italian
Jay Eaton
as Writer
George 'Gabby' Hayes
as Farmers' Spokesman
Mary Lou Dix
as Shop girl
George Meeker
as Brookfield
Eddie Kane
as Henneberry
Patricia Monroe
as Hat Check Girl
Lillian Ross
as Hat Check Girl
Edward Keane
as Board member
Peggy Page
as Cigarette Girl
Janet Eastman
as Shop Girl
Jack Mower
as Reporter
Ann Doran
as Girl on Bus
Cecil Cunningham
as Minor Supporting Role
John Picorri
as Board member
Bess Flowers
as Minor Role
Beatrice Curtis
as Secretary
Beatrice Blinn
as Assistant Secretary
Pauline Wagner
as Telephone Operator
Lee Shumway
as Bailiff
Frank Hammond
as Man at Information Booth
Charles Sullivan
as Beatle Puss - Taxi Driver
Florence Wix
as Minor Role
Hal Budlong
as Elevator Man
Ethel Palmer
as Governess
Vesey O'Davoren
as Party Guest
Charles C. Wilson
as Court Clerk
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Critic Reviews for Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

All Critics (19)

  • Lots of sentiment, lots of comedy and lots of surprise.

    Jul 22, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Frank Capra's Mr. Deeds Goes to Town features a pair of great performances from Gary Cooper and Jean Arthur, and a story that is partially compelling, but it's ultimately let down by an overlong runtime that the film isn't able to sustain.

    Oct 10, 2016 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Playing the part as if born to it, Cooper is at the top of his game, imbuing Deeds with just the right blend of empathy and intelligence.

    Jul 27, 2014 | Rating: 79/100 | Full Review…
  • Mr. Deeds is really a very intelligent and beautiful affair, a film no less charming than Mr. Capra's It Happened One Night at the same time that it is definitely more profound.

    Jan 18, 2013 | Full Review…
  • Snappy lines, stellar performances, Capra classic.

    Jan 1, 2011 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • Capra advocates populism and egalitarianism, underlined by values of Christianity. For him, every person is "God's creation" in his/her own right, evert person possesses some talent and should do his/her best with that gift.

    Jan 28, 2007 | Rating: A | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Mr. Deeds Goes to Town

  • Oct 30, 2018
    Another Capra vehicle for decency, the common man, and the ideals of America as he saw them, â~Mr. Deeds Goes to Townâ(TM) is heart-warming and engaging. When a small-town guy (Gary Cooper) inherits a large fortune, he goes to New York, where heâ(TM)s preyed upon by his uncleâ(TM)s own lawyers, a newspaper reporter who cozies up to him to get the inside scoop of what heâ(TM)s like (Jean Arthur), and others who are looking to swindle him. At first, he seems like an easy target, showing more interest in playing his tuba, sliding down his new mansionâ(TM)s bannisters, and dashing to the window when he hears a fire truck go by, like a big kid. We quickly see another side of him when he remains aloof about not relinquishing power of attorney, and then getting to the bottom of a board meeting for an opera club thatâ(TM)s losing money. What a nice moment that is â" and if youâ(TM)ve ever been in a position where you have to dig into the details when someone else is established and trying to redirect you, youâ(TM)ll identify. Mr. Deeds is childlike in some ways, but heâ(TM)s got common sense, and wonâ(TM)t be pushed around. He also quickly understands when heâ(TM)s being made a fool of by a table of poets at a dinner club. Jean Arthur is as charming as ever in her role, even if the trope of her character is often seen â" the woman who starts off a relationship with ulterior motives, but then softens and ends up with genuine feelings. She has some lovely scenes with Cooper, and both of them show good range. She first feels his earnestness when after taking him to Grantâ(TM)s Tomb, which more jaded tourists are disappointed by, he says: âOh, I see a small Ohio farm boy becoming a great soldier. I see thousands of marching men. I see General Lee, with a broken heart, surrendering. I can see the beginning of a new nation, like Abraham Lincoln said. And I can see that Ohio boy being inaugurated as president. Things like that can only happen in a country like America.â? Itâ(TM)s a bit much I suppose, but it shows the purity of idealism. Capra delivers several other social comments, many of which are spoken during a trial whose procedures are a bit questionable, but whose messages are stirring, and I imagine especially so during the Depression. Heâ(TM)s still a beacon of light today, and I felt this (adjusted) lyric float up into my mind: â~Where have you gone, Frank Russell Capra, a nation turns its lonely eyes to you.â? As in other movies, he wanders close to the edge of having Cooper seem Christ-like, and indeed, at one point Arthur remarks that sheâ(TM)s crucifying him, and later he sits mutely, under the unfairest of attacks. There are moments of levity, however, and itâ(TM)s interesting that this was the film that was the origin of the word â~doodlingâ(TM). I will include some quotes that speak to helping others and kindness: âWhat puzzles me is why people seem to get so much pleasure out of hurting each other. Why don't they try liking each other once in a while?â? âPeople here are funny. They work so hard at living, they forget how to live. Last night, after I left you, I was walking along, looking at the tall buildings, and I got to thinkin' about what Thoreau said. â~They created a lot of grand palaces here, but they forgot to create the noblemen to put in them.â(TM) I'd rather have Mandrake Falls.â? âNo matter what system of government we have, there'll always be leaders and always be followers. Like the road in front of my house, on a steep hill. Every day, I watch the cars climbing up. Some go lickety-split up that hill, some have to shift into second. Some sputter and shake and slip back to the bottom again. Same cars, same gasoline, yet some make it and some don't. I say the fellows who can make the hill should stop and help those who can't. That's all I'm trying to do, help fellows who can't make the hill.â? âIt's like I see one fellow in a rowboat who's tired of rowing and wants a free ride, and another who's drowning. Who would you expect me to rescue? Mr. Cedar, who wants a free ride? Or those men who are drowning? Any 10-year-old child will give you the answer to that.â?
    Antonius B Super Reviewer
  • May 20, 2014
    An "everyman" inherits a fortune but is surprised by the culture of his upper class peers. Frank Capra must have had the most simplistic ideas about wealth and morality. Between this film and You Can't Take It with You, Capra's economic philosophy must begin and end with "Money makes you bad." This is not to say that Capra believes money is corrupting force, but to say that Capra's films imply that anyone pursuing wealth must do so at the expense of his/her soul. But even Capra's construction of the "everyman" is problematic because Gary Cooper's character, while basically decent, is a bit of an asshole. He goes around punching people or threatening violence because he believes a good swift knock is the best way to clean someone's clock. Mr. Deeds might be a swell guy, but by golly, don't cross him. Overall, Capra, one of Hollywood's classic filmmakers, is overrated
    Jim H Super Reviewer
  • Jan 07, 2014
    A very cool Capra film that has the usual questioning of the purpose of life with good heartwarming moments. I don't even want to speculate on what the Adam Sandler remake provides. Gary Cooper in one of the few performances in which he is not annoying.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Nov 13, 2011
    Another inspiring tale from the master. Gary Cooper is brilliant.
    Graham J Super Reviewer

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