The well-ordered world of gubernatorial candidate Jonathan Wooley (March) is about to go haywire. First we learn that during the fabled Salem Witch trials, Jonathan’s ancestor condemned a couple of witches to death, who then placed a curse stipulating that henceforth no male Wooley would be happy in love. Clearly the curse is still in effect, with Jonathan betrothed to the spoiled Estelle (Hayward). When the dormant spirits of the two witches are released, Daniel (Kellaway) and his daughter Jennifer (Lake) resolve to torment Jonathan further, but complications arise when Jennifer starts having feelings for him.
Rene Clair’s charming, infectious romp sees gifted actor March scoring in a rare comic role as the priggish Jonathan. But the movie really belongs to Lake, hypnotically seductive as the sprite-like Jennifer. (Check out Lake’s trademark “peekaboo” hairdo!) Kellaway is a hoot as her tippling father who keeps forgetting his incantations, and Benchley also scores as Jonathan’s equally bibulous yet staunch supporter. Highlight: that extended wedding sequence. An inspiration for the TV series “Bewitched”, this classic comedy casts its own delightful spell.