Tuesday’s Overlooked Film: Holiday Affair (1949)

It’s December y’all. The holiday season is in full swing. So for this month I am going to try to dig through my cinematic memory and pull out some of those Christmas films that many of you may not have seen.

My first pick is the 1949 romantic comedy Holiday Affair starring Janet Leigh and Robert Mitchum – yeah you read that right – tough as nails Robert Mitchum as a comedic romantic star. Sounds pretty far-fetched and it is. But it works on some levels with the end product.

Mitchum portrays Steve Mason, a drifter, a “n’er do well”, working at a department store where he runs into war-widow Connie Ennis (Leigh) and who he immediately suspects is a competitive shopper. This of course makes their initial contact a little rocky to say the least. But this is a rom-com, folks, so we all know where this is headed. Add to the mix an adorable kid (Timmy) and romantic rival in the form Carl Davis (Wendell Corey) you have a formulaic yet enjoyable film perfect for this time of year.

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Check out this clip from TCM:


  1. Ooooh, a Mitchum I’ve missed. Thanks for the heads-up, Iba.
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  2. Have never heard of the movie and looking at it I’m not sure this really is something I’d enjoy. Nice review though!

  3. Mitchum always did have a nice comedic touch, even in his scariest roles…
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  4. Patti Abbott says:

    I love this one. Mitchum could do it all. Janet Leigh is the weaker link for me.

  5. Cool choice! This got one vote in my Christmas movies poll but several people on Twitter mentioned it. As one commenter wrote, “it’s just mindboggling to see Robert Mitchum in a holiday flick.” I’ve never seen it, hope it’s going to be on TCM this month 🙂
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  6. I’ve never seen this one either, but I’m familiar with the actors. Maybe it will be available on Netflix someday? I watched White Christmas last night and that was okay I suppose.
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  7. I was surprised to see Robert Mitchum in a rom-com but hey, glad to hear he was good in this. His casting actually intrigues me. Great pick, Iba!
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    • I think he did a couple in his career. I mentioned another one from the 1960’s many moon ago – The Grass is Greener with Jean Simmons, Deborah and the always lovely to watch Cary Grant.

  8. Poor Wendell Corey – compered to Mitchum he has NO hope. Come to think of it, he never did. Playing the second banana love interest was a way of life for him. 🙂

    I remember seeing this ages ago, thanks for the reminder, Iba. I’m going to add it to my Christmas must watch list.

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