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The Best Lana Turner or Clark Gable Film You’ve Never Seen?!

Homecoming, The third of four films Lana Turner made with Clark Gable, this one finds them embroiled in the war and the cause. Gable is on a ship coming home from war, when conversations with reporters wanting a story make him think of what changed his life and the way he thinks. Flashback: Gable is a surgeon who went to school to make the big dough and live high on the hog, enjoying his free time and his home life with wife Anne Baxter, playing golf, and all the things that come with a care-free easy existence, all the while thinking he’s got it made and that he’s noble for going in and saving people’s lives on the table. His friend John Hodiak tells him off saying as much as this. John has been trying to get him to help those less fortunate in the lower-class part of town, but Clark never made time for it. He volunteers for service, not because he really wants to, but because it’s the right thing to do, for appearances’ sake, because others are doing it. While sailing to where he’s stationed, Lana interrupts his conversation with fellow serviceman, Ray Collins. To cut to the chase, they are very antagonistic towards each other and he later finds out she has been picked to be his nurse to assist him in surgeries. Nicknamed Snapshot, Lana tells Clark her story of how she came into this war and why she believes in it. Their antagonism developing into a friendship and more is the whole story, but it is done so tenderly and real, that nothing feels forced or false. I admit Lana Turner may be one of those actresses of whom always seems to play herself, but here she is not glamorous at all, but instead delved into character head first. Gable’s homecoming to wife Anne Baxter is very touching. I was very impressed with how real and thoughtful this film was. “Honky Tonk” may be the film of theirs together that most viewers enjoy, but Homecoming is much more meaningful and therefore more rewarding. It may just be the best Gable and/or Turner film you’ve never seen.

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