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The Great Gildersleeve

The Great Gildersleeve(1942)

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Amelia Hooker, a spinster with matrimonial designs on Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, hints that her brother, Judge Horace Hooker, may deny Gildersleeve's petition for legal guardianship of his niece Margie and nephew LeRoy unless he marries. When Gildersleeve replies that he plans to install a woman in the house, Amelia thinks that he is planning to propose to her. Gildersleeve's idea of a woman in the house, however, is to recruit the children's aunt Emma to come and live with the family. As he prepares to drive to the Summerfield train station to meet Emma, Gildersleeve discovers that his car is out of gas, and so he drives LeRoy's scooter with sidecar instead. When the sidecar derails with Aunt Emma in it, her watch is destroyed in the resulting crash. While Gildersleeve is replacing the watch at jeweler's, Amelia's friends see him and, assuming that he is buying an engagement ring, call to offer Amelia their congratulations. That night, a messenger delivers a love letter from Amelia to Gildersleeve, prompting the panicked bachelor to visit the Hooker house the next morning to deny any matrimonial intent. After the judge angrily gives him ten days to marry or lose custody of his niece and nephew, Gildersleeve reluctantly considers courting Amelia. Deploring the idea of Amelia becoming their "mother," LeRoy and Margie scheme to make their uncle the most important man in town in order to intimidate Judge Hooker. As LeRoy prints handbills touting Gildersleeve's greatness, Margie leads brass bands in salute of him. When Governor John Stafford's car breaks down in Summerfield, the governor meets LeRoy as he is posting the handbills. The governor, who is traveling incognito because he wants a rest, introduces himself as Mr. Smith. Discovering that the governor is suffering from a bad cold, LeRoy invites him home to try Aunt Emma's cold cure. At the Gildersleeve house, Aunt Emma puts the ailing governor to bed. When Gildersleeve is told about their house guest, he becomes angry until Margie, who has learned their visitor's true identity from his chauffeur, informs her uncle of the governor's ruse. Athough the governor pleads with the family to keep his identity a secret, Gildersleeve immediately goes to his country club and brags that the governor is his guest. To verify Gildersleeve's story, Mayor Appleton calls the governor's office, and when his secretary transfers the call to the "governor," the mayor and the others think that Gildersleeve is lying and decide to teach him a lesson. Judge Hooker invites Gilversleeve and the governor to a luncheon at the club the next day, and when the guest of honor arrives, the club members use a trick microphone to squirt water in his face and send electric shocks to his chair. Indignant, the governor is about to leave when Mayor Appleton arrives and recognizes him. Thoroughly humiliated, Judge Hooker goes home to pack his possessions and leave town. As the judge packs his trunk, Gildersleeve and Governor Stafford drive to his house, and after the governor forgives the judge's antics, Gildersleeve and Judge Hooker reconcile.