Ever have those moments in life where you dream of a different life with different people to stand by you? Well that’s basically how W.C. Fields‘s character feels in this comedic film. It’s a Gift is about a grocer who quits his stressful job as a grocer in hopes of having his own orange grove- if only his family was more of a help.
W.C. Fields is another example of someone who started out on the stage doing comedy acts that transitioned to the screen such as The Marx Brothers and Mae West. That was a tool used back then to get those box office numbers up by bringing familiar sketches by famous comedians to the big screen. As funny as W.C. Fields was in this film using physical comedy such as unsuccessfully trying to get ready in the morning or sleeping on the back porch, I loved Kathleen Howard as his impossible, nagging wife. She has a powerful and forceful voice that would make any man afraid.
This film can relate to anyone who is miserable in life whether it’s career-wise or if you wish for an escape from your annoying family. W.C. Field’s character Mr. Bissonette (now that’s pronounced Bis-on-nay) is feeling that misery as he works as a grocer and has a nagging wife and annoying children. This big dream of him having an orange grove could be the perfect escape for him. He drives to California with his family in search of this orange grove despite their lack of support in him. My favorite scene is when Mr. Bissonette’s next customer is a blind man who can barely hear who inadvertently ruins his store! I wonder how the blind community would feel about this scene? What I like about the character of Mr. Bissonette is that because his urge for this big dream is so strong, he never gives up. Everyone loves an underdog and a good laugh so check out this film!
Unfortunately I couldn’t find a copy anywhere online but here’s a clip from my favorite scene: