Loretta Young and Celeste Holm are radiant as sisters of the Order of Holy Endeavor. They have to work with three men who each provide obstacles to their purpose: a composer and neighbor, Robert Mason (Hugh Marlowe), a Bishop (Basil Ruysdael) with no money to assist them and the power to stop their effort, and a wealthy “bookie” in New York named Luigi Rossi (Thomas Gomez) who owns the land on which they want to build.
The screenplay was written in 1949 by Clare Boothe Luce and was quite different from her previous works, including The Women. In 1944, Luce’s only child, Ann, died at the age of 19 in an automobile accident. Part of Luce’s healing from this tragedy included her conversion to Roman Catholicism. Come to the Stable was her first written work after these events.
There is a charming quality to this film that is reflected in unlikely happenstances and the luminescent countenances of Loretta Young and Celeste Holm. Dooley Wilson is delightful as Anthony James, an employee of Mason who, along with Miss Potts, provides consistent support for the sisters, despite the challenges they encounter.
Interesting note: The four areas named on the sign post exist in Israel. Pennsylvania appears to have all four areas although Jordan is a township. The box containing my videotape copy of the movie identifies the location as Bethlehem, Connecticut. There are, however, several dozen cities by that name in the U.S. The location would seem to need to be in close proximity to New York because the nuns travel there in a jeep that is open at the top.
Enjoy the first ten minutes of Come to the Stable on YouTube. Embedded video clips on the Cafe's front page are removed after five days.