Matt Conti’s review:
**Part of the Best Picture Project**
I have yet to see a Frank Capra film that doesn't put some kind of goofy smile on my face.
This film has to be one of Wes Anderson's favorite. It involves Jimmy Stewart, son of a millionaire banker, falling in love with a girl (Jean Arthur) that has an eccentric family. The colorful cast of characters reminds me a lot of the same one in The Royal Tenenbaums. The family is headed by Lionel Barrymore, and gosh darnit, he's the nicest person you'd ever know. He's a complete foil to Jimmy Stewart's father, played by Edward Arnold, who is your typical stern businessman.
In typical Capricorn fashion, the film relies on sentimentality and the common theme of the poor against the oppressive rich, but gosh darnit, this is exactly what Capra did best, and it works. While it doesn't have the visual flourish that Capra's Lost Horizon featured, it makes the film a lot more intimate, and I can hardly fault the editing here, because there's some nice transitions going on here, as well as a lot of symmetrical shots.
You Can't Take It with You doesn't feel like the Best Picture winner it is, and it certainly is far from Capra's best films, but gosh darnit, I dare you to try and not smile.