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Masters of Screwball: Frank Capra

You Can’t Take It With You | Film Studies: Screwball Express

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Together with Howard Hawks and his film Twentieth Century, director Frank Capra virtually created the screwball genre with his classic romantic comedy, It Happened One Night, starring Claudette Colbert and Clark Gable. More hits followed, among them Mr Deeds Goes to Town, Mr Smith Goes to Washington and, later, It’s A Wonderful Life, a run that made Capra the best know director of his era.

In this Film Studies presentation, Michael van den Bos discusses Capra’s comic contributions to the golden age of screwball. This 25-minute talk is followed by a screening of the folksy farce You Can’t Take It With You (1938), starring Jean Arthur, Lionel Barrymore, Edward Arnold, and Jimmy Stewart, in the first of his three iconic collaborations with Capra.


Please note that these films from nine decades ago sometimes reflect attitudes and assumptions that are considered offensive today, in particular in regards to their treatment of racial and ethnic difference, as well as towards sexuality and gender. VIFF invites audiences to view these films through a historical lens and with the critical distance that time provides for us.


10:30 am


11:00 am


Michael van den Bos


Frank Capra


James Stewart, Lionel Barrymore, Edward Arnold

Country of Origin






180 min

Book Tickets

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