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Never Say Die

One of Bob Hope's best early films, in which he plays a millionaire hypochondriac led to believe he is slowly digesting himself (his acidity test has been mixed up with a dog's) and who therefore disposes of the rest of his life with the usual complicated results. Scripted originally by Preston Sturges, with Hope's regular gagmen Hartman and Butler brought in to add trademark wisecracks; the familiar Hope persona is already evident but not entirely fixed, so the mix works quite well, with enough of the original surviving (the European health spa, the philosophical butler, the delight in verbal eccentricities) to make it something of an embryo Sturges film. Martha Raye is excellent, even rather touching, as the girl he marries when he thinks he has only two weeks to live, and the supporting cast is admirable.

Release details

Duration: 76 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Elliott Nugent
Screenwriter: Don Hartman, Frank Butler, Preston Sturges
Cast: Bob Hope
Martha Raye
Andy Devine
Gale Sondergaard
Alan Mowbray
Sig Ruman
Ivan Simpson
Monty Woolley
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