Greatest Film Scenes
and Moments

The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944)


Written by Tim Dirks

Title Screen
Movie Title/Year and Scene Descriptions

The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944)

In director/writer Preston Sturges' fast-moving, farcical screwball comedy - one of the funniest films ever made (and most controversial - at the time, about an illegitimate pregnancy, a word never mentioned in the film) - about the subversive nature of motherhood, patriotism, small-town mentality, and "our boys overseas":

  • the introduction of the main character in an early scene in Rafferty's Music Store -- pretty clerk Trudy Kockenlocker (Betty Hutton), the daughter of Morgan Creek's Chief of Police, who was first seen mouthing the words to a phonograph record of a deep-voiced singer crooning "The Bell in the Bay"; when the song ended, she told a group of soldiers in the store: ("Come on now, you got to beat it or buy something before Mr. Rafferty gets after me"); after an invitation by the male group, she promised to attend their going-away military dance that night
  • the scene of Trudy's explanation to her skeptical, overprotective, "old-fashioned" father Constable Edmund Kockenlocker (William Demarest) that she was attending the dance, when he expressly forbid her to attend: ("Just a moment. What is this military kiss-the-boys-goodbye business, and where is it to be transacted?...Just a minute! What happens after the country club?...So, as your father and mother combined, I'm here to tell you that you ain't going on no more military parties")
  • Trudy's friendship with 4-F rated local bank clerk Norval Jones (Eddie Bracken) - he explained how his nervousness caused his rejection by the Army: ("I'm perfectly calm. I'm as cool as ice. I start to figure maybe they won't take me and some cold sweat runs down the middle of my back, and my head begins to buzz and everything in the middle of the room begins to swim, and I get black spots in front of my eyes and they say I've got high blood pressure again. And all the time I'm as cool as ice!")
Trudy's Secret Attendance at Military Party
  • Trudy's secret attendance at the wild, drunken farewell military dance party with lots of spiked Victory Lemonade (while her movie date Norval served as a "decoy" and attended three feature movies until one in the morning); and after lots of dancing, hitting her head on a rotating glitter ball and suffering subsequent memory problems; the next morning at 8 o'clock, she met up with Norval on Main Street, who was blamed by her exasperated father for returning her late
  • Trudy's shocking realization that she might have married one of the departing soldiers for combat; she described the previous night to her pragmatic younger sister Emmy Kockenlocker (Diana Lynn), and had great difficulty recalling anything: ("Can you imagine gettin' hitched up in the middle of the night with a curtain ring to somebody that's goin' away that you might never ever see again, Emmy?"); when Emmy noticed the ring on Trudy's finger, she tried to remember what had happened: ("I remember I danced with a tall, dark boy with curly hair, and a little short one with freckles, and a big fat blond one who sang in my ear. But if I married any of those, it would have been the tall, dark one with the curly hair, don't you think?"), and then she claimed that she couldn't remember his name: ("It had a 'Z' in it....Like Ratzkiwatzki, Pvt. Ratzkiwatzki, or was it Zitzkiwitzki?") - but in any event, they had both given false names at the wedding that she couldn't remember; and she also discovered soon after, to complicate matters even further, that she was pregnant
  • the comedy of errors when Norval became involved in Trudy's problems by stepping in to be the soldier-father of the unborn child
  • the funny marriage proposal scene on the front porch, in which the overly-nervous Norval attempted to discuss tying the knot with Trudy to her father who was cleaning his hand-gun: ("Sit down! What are you so nervous about?...There's getting to be quite a little talk in the town....Where I come from, we don't skulk around in the bushes, you get me?...When we gotta cross the street, we don't crawl through the sewer to get there.... When we've got something to say, we say it!...When is the happy event?...When are you and Trudy getting hitched?... What are you laughing about?... You haven't answered my question...There isn't any idiocy in your family, is there?...Oh, she won't?...You didn't ask her right. You gotta be more forceful in these matters. Dames like to be bossed. Now, you take me...You can do better. You better do better....We accept. You're in....You can settle the details up between youse. All I'm interested in is results. I'm a man who looks at things broadly, see? (the gun accidentally discharged)...I almost forgot, congratulations!")
  • one of the concluding scenes in the frenzied lobby outside the delivery room in the hospital on Christmas Day - where nurses and doctors rushed about and announced: "It's a boy" - then "Twins!" - and finally: "Six! All boys!"; newspaper headlines all around the world announced: "SIX BOYS!!", "SEXTUPLETS BORN IN MID-WEST", "SIX! ALL BOYS! SIX!", "CANADA PROTESTS - "Possible But Not Probable," Says Premier", including "MUSSOLINI RESIGNS," and even Hitler's tantrum about the news: "HITLER DEMANDS RECOUNT"
Announcements About Trudy's Delivery
  • reclining in bed, wife Trudy innocently asked husband Norval (in full-dress uniform): "We'll have to pick out a name for it? Was it a boy or a girl?"; when he asked the same question of Emmy, she motioned him to follow her to an adjoining room where they looked through a glass partition at six cribs; wordlessly, he went hysterical when he realized the sextuplets were his, and he raced back to Trudy's room and collapsed on her bed
  • the film's ending title card dissolved over the ending scene: "But Norval recovered and became increasingly happy for, as Shakespeare said: 'Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.'" THE END

Trudy Kockenlocker
(Betty Hutton)

Trudy with Father

Trudy with Norval Jones

Trudy Explaining Her Many Dilemmas to Sister Emmy

Norval's Marriage Proposal to Trudy's Father on Front Porch

Trudy With Norval After Giving Birth

Nursery Window - Viewing Sextuplets



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