The Bishop’s Wife 1947 ***


Despite a low-key opening, It’s a Wonderful Life founds a new life and audience through cable and Tv reruns, establishing it as the world’s favourite Christmas film. Anyone looking for another dose of traditional festive entertainment need look no further than The Bishops’s Wife, a delicious slice of angelic whimsy from 1947. David Niven plays bishop Henry Broughtam, Loretta Young plays his wife Julia, and with a potential crisis looming in the form of funding issues for a new cathedral, Cary Grant brings all his considerable charisma to bear as Dudley, the angel sent to smooth things over. The bishops loss of faith, and his fears that the angel might steal his wife’s heart are resolved in feel-good fashion;  it may not ring the Xmas bells as loudly as Capra’s classic, but Henry Koster’s film is a black and white delight.


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