Doctor in the House (1954)

Doctor in the House (1954)

“Don’t forget: to be a successful surgeon you need the eyes of a hawk, the heart of a lion, and the hands of a lady.”

A naive doctor-in-training (Dirk Bogarde) and his classmates (Kenneth More, Donald Sinden, and Donald Houston) navigate through the challenges of medical school and dating.

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • College
  • Comedy
  • Dirk Bogarde Films
  • Doctors and Nurses

I’ll admit to having little patience for this enormously popular British comedy (based on a novel by former doctor Richard Gordon), which broke box-office records and spawned no less than six cinematic sequels and a television series. Unfortunately, it’s little more than an extended situation comedy involving a cadre of not-too-likeable young medical students who are much more interested in having fun than gaining a solid footing in their future profession; Bogarde is nominally the sympathetic protagonist, but he doesn’t come across as much better (or more interesting) than his friends.

The humor is consistently lowbrow, and the episodic screenplay does little to hold our attention. The film’s only minor redeeming point is its willingness to show a diverse crowd of medical students on campus (including women and people of color):

Unfortunately, none of the latter are given substantial roles, and the former are reduced to either sex objects or shrews. Call me a grump, but this one’s simply icky; I couldn’t wait for it to be over.

Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
Not much at all.

Must See?
No; feel free to skip this clunker.


One thought on “Doctor in the House (1954)

  1. Not a must. First viewing.

    Talented cast in rather a snore, really. Agreed: skip it.

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