Released in 1962, That Touch of Mink is the only film Cary Grant and Doris Day ever made together. The pairing came late in the careers of both, as they would each be finished making movies within the next six years. Cary Grant would appear in just three more films after this one, and Doris Day just ten more, before embarking on a successful television career.
Society’s views on sex have changed a lot in the last fifty years, which means several aspects of That Touch of Mink seem ridiculous today. The film’s central premise (and its only source of tension), is the fact that career woman Cathy Timberlake (Day) is a virgin and has to decide whether to have sex with the rich, good looking Philip Shayne (Grant) even though there’s no promise of wedding bells on the horizon. When you consider that Doris Day was thirty-eight when the film was released, the idea of her character being a virgin is laughable. On top of that, Cary Grant is playing a multimillionaire with charm to spare. Looked at from a modern perspective, this whole set up is ludicrous. Who wouldn’t want to be with a multimillionaire who looked like Cary Grant? In 1962 though, premarital sex was a controversial issue. Either way, you have to buy the premise, or That Touch of Mink is a waste of your time.
Sexual harassment and domestic violence weren’t considered serious issues. In one scene, Cathy goes to the unemployment office to get her benefits, and the clerk (John Astin) threatens to withhold her check unless she goes out on a “date’ with him. In another scene, a business associate tells Philip that his wife doesn’t want to sleep with him anymore. When Philip asks what he did about it, the man casually replies, “I belted her.” Thankfully, things have come a long way concerning those issues.
Despite some elements that obviously haven’t aged well, That Touch of Mink is still an enjoyable film because of the Doris Day/Cary Grant pairing. I’ll admit to being a fan of almost all of Doris Day’s comedies, and it Grant’s comic sensibilities mix well with hers. The script by Stanley Shapiro and Nate Monaster is filled with double entendres delivered for maximum laughs by both stars. Fans of the New York Yankees will get a kick out of Grant and Day’s first date. He takes her to Yankee Stadium and gets her good seats, which turn out to be on the Yankee bench. Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and Yogi Berra all appear in a cameo and Day gets in an argument with the umpire.
While Day and Grant are funny, the supporting cast offers up some of the biggest laughs. Gig Young as Philip’s assistant Roger gets some great lines, “You know the trouble I have sleeping? Well, I’ve solved it. Just before you go to bed you put three tranquilizers in a jigger of brandy and you drink it. You still can’t sleep but you’re so relaxed that you don’t worry about it.” Audrey Meadows is also funny as Cathy’s sassy roommate.
A battle of the sexes for the early 1960’s, That Touch of Mink is undeniably dated, but still manages to be funny because of the fine performances of the entire cast. When you’re cringing at a few of the lines, just remember that the film was made in 1962.
Presented in the 2.35:1 aspect ratio, Olive Films 1080p transfer has some minor specks and scratches, but it’s a solid release. The color is surprisingly strong, with very little fading. While flesh tones are slightly brown on occasion, things still look rather natural. Object detail is quite good, and the image looks fairly crisp without any noticeable compression issues.
That Touch of Mink‘s lossless DTS-HD Master Audio Mono mix has some surprising depth given its age. Dialogue is clear throughout, and fidelity is excellent, though there isnt much in the way of dynamic range.
No subtitles are available.
There are no special features.
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