"Family Honeymoon" is the last pairing of Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray. And of the six I have seen (I am missing the elusive "Practically Yours"), it is the dullest and most uninspired. It is also the most reactionary, even if it starts off with a good premise. A widow with three children is to marry an academic. However, the kids babysitter (her spinster sister) breaks her leg and is unable to manage the kids who tag along on the honeymoon.
The plot is also full of preposterous incidents (a mother not paying
attention to their kids at a train stop?!) and a predatory woman (Rita
Johnson, failing to do what Gail Patrick could do so well) to keep the
story moving to its 90th minute. This latter point is actually extraordinarily annoying, as it passes
all possible suspension of disbelief, with Johnson's character too eager
to disrupt the honeymoon. Although I must confess that the party sequence at the end was a slight improvement over the rest of the film.
Neither Colbert or MacMurray do more than the bare minimum and I would suggest that all they thought of was the pay check, and honestly I can't blame them. Hattie McDaniel has a small role, just a bit more than a cameo, and looks very ill in what was one of her last film roles. Only Lilian Bronson as Colbert's sister manages to make something interesting of what is an disappointing
farewell of one of my favourite actor pairings of old Hollywood.