With a PG-13 rating, it’s somewhat interesting that the movie promoters have chosen Legos as one of their avenues of indoctrination, but Blandings’ boys 1, 2 and 3 can tell you almost everything you need to know about a movie made well before they were born.
Catalogues and computer games extol the adventures of Dr. Jones and what mommy can argue with a hero with a Ph.D.? You don’t think I missed the opportunity to tell them how many years he went to school and how hard he had to study do you? Yes, the message is definitely that women and adventure follow straight A’s and advanced graduate degrees.
Indy wasn’t our first Lego love. Star Wars was number one in the Blandings’ box office, a smash hit, for over two years. Again, PG-13 movies promoted by products with “7 & Up” on the box.
But do not count our day as the day of shameless promotion. In 1948, David O. Selznik and RKO Radio Pictures built 73 houses across the nation to promote the new film, “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House.”
I have relatively recent articles from Tulsa, Toledo, South Bend, Oklahoma City, Chattanooga, Portland and, yes, Connecticut, providing updates on the Blandings’ homes in their cities. Most of the homeowners were not aware of the houses history when they purchased them, but all are captivated by the charm of the homes and the story.
We have one right here in Kansas City a short stroll from my Dream House. I didn’t know until I started writing the blog and folks started saying, “Oh, like the house around the corner.” One of our iconic developers, J.C. Nichols claimed he could build the house of a fraction of the $18,000 that Grant’s character paid for his. I contacted the owner and asked her if I could post an image. Lovely and gracious, she agreed. She knew, of course, the house’s pedigree. She said, “Come by soon, everything is green and blooming.” A dream house, indeed.