The Jackpot, from 1950, is a little-known Jimmy Stewart comedy which I discovered on Fox Movie Channel a couple years ago. It's a film I had never even heard of, let alone seen, but since my family adores Jimmy Stewart, when I saw this on the FMC schedule, I just had to set the DVR. It's really a charming movie, and even I---drama-lover that I am---enjoyed every minute of it. The film also stars Barbara Hale, while James Gleason and a young Natalie Wood have minor roles.
Bill and Amy Lawrence (Stewart and Hale) are just an average, everyday family---that is, until bandleader Harry James changes their life for the worse. Of course, it wasn't Harry James's fault--- his name just happened to be the answer to a radio show's "Mystery Husband" contest. Though Bill at first thinks his phone number being chosen to play the game is nothing more than a gag, he soon discovers it is all very real, and he more than gets into playing along. When, by the flip of a coin, Bill decides that Betty Grable's husband is the mystery husband and that by knowing that, he has won $24,000 worth of prizes, total mayhem descends upon his formerly mundane life.
Bill and Amy's prize package includes an assortment of goodies, some practical, some hilarious---a diamond ring, a palomino pony, a complete home makeover, a grand piano, several thousand cans of soup, a trip for two, a portrait appointment with an artist, and on and on. The chaos begins when the Lawrences are informed that they are responsible for the income tax on everything.
The Jackpot is just a sweet, loads-of-fun movie. It's certainly no Academy Award winner, but it's a delightful film the whole family can enjoy . . . yes, even the little ones ought to get a huge kick out of this. Jimmy Stewart is his usual, totally wonderful self; I feel quite sure that all Stewart fans will want to see this 4-star, little-known gem.
While this film is not out on DVD, it is on VHS. Additionally, it is available on YouTube, in its entirety (HERE). Definitely try to see this if you can...I'm sure you will enjoy every minute of it.