While gambling may not bother some people, it definitely bothers Miriam Halsworth (Claudette Colbert); in fact, it bothers her so much that she is ending her 20-year marriage to Hugh (MacDonald Carey), since he has a penchant for gambling. As the film begins, Hugh and Miriam's divorce is only hours away from becoming final.
Although Hugh is no longer living in the house with her, Miriam is not alone. Their daughter, Barbara (Barbara Bates), son-in-law Jerry (Robert Wagner), and baby granddaughter Annabelle reside in the Halsworth home as well. Though Jerry loves his mother-in-law, he doesn't want to live with her and is constantly trying to convince Barbara that they need a place of their own; however, convinced that her mother needs her and couldn't stand being alone, Barbara refuses to even consider moving out. Hugh, who never wanted the divorce, would like to get back together with Miriam. Jerry, too, would like for Miriam to have someone in her life...otherwise, how will his wife ever leave her mother's side?
At this point, millionaire Vic MacFarland (Zachary Scott) arrives in town; a former beau of Miriam's, Vic wants very much to get back into this now-available woman's life, and he begins wining and dining her. Jerry, of course, is all for any relationship which will get his mother-in-law a husband and, therefore, his wife out of her house. Hugh, though, who still loves Miriam and is hoping to reconcile with her, isn't going to give up without a fight. How it all plays out and which man Miriam chooses is the bulk of this fun little film.
Let's Make It Legal is not a spectacular film, and the acting is mediocre at best. Still, though, it's cute and enjoyable. Claudette Colbert fans will love seeing her here in 1951. Always a class act, she is completely lovely and elegant here (as a grandma). She is 48 in this film, and in my opinion, she looks nearly the same as she did 17 years earlier in Imitation of Life.
Let's Make It Legal is one of Miss Colbert's last films, as after this, she would make only six more. While she would go on to be active in TV, her film career was nearly at an end.
Robert Wagner fans will LOVE seeing him in this, his third credited film. He's very young here (just 21) and SO incredibly good-looking.