When you see a film called Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day, what do you think it is going to be? That is a question you are going to have to answer for yourself. However, I can tell you that thoughts of an entertaining movie did not enter my mind. Seriously, does that look like a good movie title? Whenever I mentioned it to friends, they generally responded with a quizzical look, as if I had two heads.
Anyway, I gave the trailer a view and to my surprise it did not look half bad. It did have the advantage of an appealing cast, featuring a couple of stars on the rise, and the project looked like fun. I know, I was surprised, too. So off I went to the theater, which I shared with scant few. Judging by the audience's reactions, I was not the only one who enjoyed it.Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day brings to mind the era of screwball comedies of the 1930s and '40s. You remember, films like Bringing Up Baby, The Lady Eve, and His Girl Friday. It was an era that saw the likes of Howard Hawks and Preston Sturges delivering memorable comedy to the screen, and influencing later films such as Some Like it Hot and Pillow Talk. The influence can even be felt in more recent years, even before Pettigrew, with the likes of Down with Love. Needless to say, it is a type of comedy whose heyday was long ago, but whose ripples are still felt today.It may have been one of those ripples that inspired the creative team behind this film to take a look back to that era for inspiration in bringing this underserved genre back to the big screen. You see, Miss Pettigrew Lives For A Day is based on the novel of the same name, originally published in 1939 and written by Winifred Watson. It is interesting to note that Miss Watson did have trouble getting the book published at first. Her prior novels were dramas and there was less interest in a "fun" novel.