Send Me No Flowers

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Send Me No Flowers
SendMeNoFlowers.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Norman Jewison
Produced by Harry Keller
Written by Julius J. Epstein
Norman Barasch (play)
Carroll Moore (play)
Starring Rock Hudson
Doris Day
Music by Frank De Vol
Cinematography Daniel L. Fapp
Edited by J. Terry Williams
Production
  company
Martin Melcher Productions
Distributed by Universal Studios
Release date(s)
  • October 14, 1964 (1964-10-14)
Running time 100 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $9,129,247[1]

Send Me No Flowers is a 1964 American comedy film, directed by Norman Jewison and starring Rock Hudson, Doris Day, and Tony Randall. After Pillow Talk and Lover Come Back, it is the third and final film in which Hudson, Day and Randall starred together.

The screenplay by Julius J. Epstein is based on the play by Norman Barasch and Carroll Moore, which had a brief run on Broadway in 1960.[2] The title tune was written by Hal David and Burt Bacharach.

Synopsis[edit]

George Kimball (Rock Hudson), a chronic hypochondriac, lives with his wife Judy (Doris Day) in the suburbs. Judy hears from the milkman that their neighbors, the Bullards, are getting a divorce, and shares the news with George.

Over lunch, George is repelled by a bachelor acquaintance, Winston Burr (Hal March), who gleefully describes how he calls up women in the community who are getting divorced, supposedly to console them, but really to seduce them while they are vulnerable.

When he experiences chest pains, George goes to the doctor for a checkup and overhears his doctor, Ralph Morrissey (Edward Andrews), discussing with an associate the diagnosis of a terminally ill patient who has just a few weeks to live. George assumes that Dr. Morrissey is talking about him and is distraught. On the train back home he tells his friend, Arnold Nash (Tony Randall), that he will die soon, and decides not to tell Judy, knowing it will upset her. Arnold solemnly assures George that he will deliver George's eulogy at his funeral.

At night, George dreams about Judy marrying Vito, an irresponsible young deliveryman who George imagines would only be out for their money. (Vito had earlier wolf-whistled at Judy when he saw her climbing through an open window in her nightgown after she locked herself out of the house.) Worried about her future, George makes plans for his death. He visits a funeral home operated by Mr. Akins (Paul Lynde) to buy a burial plot, and decides he should find a new husband for Judy. He asks Arnold to help him find a suitable man so he will know she is taken care of.

On a golf outing, Judy's golf cart malfunctions and she is saved by her old college beau Bert Power (Clint Walker), now a Texas oil baron. George agrees with Arnold that Bert would be great for Judy. During the night out, George forces Judy to dance and talk with Bert. When George runs into the newly-divorced Linda Bullard (Patricia Barry), who is there with Winston, he takes her to the coat room and warns her about Winston's intentions. She thanks him and kisses him in gratitude. When Judy sees them, she storms out, thinking that he is pushing her to spend time with Bert so that he can have an affair with Linda. George then tells Judy that he is dying.

Upset, Judy insists that George use a wheelchair. But when she sees Dr. Morrissey and he tells her that George is fine, she thinks George is lying to wriggle out of the consequences of his affair. She rolls him out of the house and locks him out, announcing her intention to divorce him. George spends the night at Arnold's house, during which time George's various demands and idiosyncrasies cause Arnold to strike, one by one, many of the complimentary remarks about George he had planned on making in his eulogy.

The next day Judy leaves to buy a train ticket. George follows her to the train station and insists that he really is dying and tells her he has bought a burial plot. Thinking this is another lie, she goes home to get her bags. But when Mr. Akins delivers the burial contracts, she realizes that George was sincere all the time and forgives him.

Performance[edit]

The film grossed $ 9,129,247 in the U.S. (Per Nash Information Services, LLC)

Cast[edit]

Principal production credits[edit]

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

The film was the last comedy for Doris Day and Rock Hudson and received mixed reviews. In his review in the New York Times, Bosley Crowther called it "a beautiful farce situation" and added, "Julius Epstein has written it . . . with nimble inventiveness and style. And Norman Jewison has directed so that it stays within bounds of good taste, is never cruel or insensitive, and makes something good of every gag." [3]

Variety felt "[it] doesn't carry the same voltage, either in laughs or originality, as Doris Day and Rock Hudson's two previous entries." [4]

Time Out London calls it "probably the best of the Doris Day/Rock Hudson vehicles . . . nicely set in a pastel-coloured suburban dreamworld, but the ineradicable blandness gets you down in the end." [5]

Channel 4 says, "it would be churlish to complain that it is a little bland, fairly predictable and has an unsurprising happy ending. There's enough humour in the ensuing misunderstandings and enough skill in the playing and direction to stifle not just criticism but even the odd yawn." [6]

References[edit]

External links[edit]