Bachelor Mother (1939)

Bachelor Mother (1939), directed by Garson Kanin.

Shop-girl Ginger Rogers tries to turn in an abandoned baby but no one will believe it's not hers. To keep her job she has to keep the kid, which is a burden at first but of course she goes soft. Good thing it's a comedy or the story would be awfully grim. In a wicked turnabout, snooty and patronizing David Niven, son of her employer, is implicated as the father. Miraculously, it all works out.

Not a top-drawer screwball, but still a pretty good romantic comedy. Taking place from Christmas to New Years, it's a sort of holiday film. Great happy New Year's mob scene outdoors. Lots of dancing but no dance numbers.

Rogers combines dignity with wit and comic timing. Niven cornered the market on the distinguished yet befuddled leading man. The baby was terrific, a real scene stealer.

The 1939 sexual innuendo was apparently ok if treated comically and implied making babies.

According to Niven, he had no training and in Hollywood just worked in bit parts and attended parties until invited to be a star. Easy.

Warner Archive title, available for rent from ClassicFlix.