Katharine Houghton Hepburn was an American actress of film, stage, and television. She is known for her headstrong independence and spirited personality, Hepburn's career as a Hollywood leading lady spanned more than 60 years. Her work came in a range of genres, from screwball comedy to literary drama. Hepburn’s movie career was a roller coaster ride, which started on a high note. But she was unable to maintain her early success. The rest of the 30s did not go well for her. Hepburn made eleven more movies in the 30s, and with a couple of exceptions, they were all box office bombs. After being labeled "box office poison" at the end of the 30s, she returned to the stage. This paper is going to compare the similarities and difference of four movies of hers. Bringing Up Baby, The Philadelphia Story, The African Queen, and Guess Who is Coming to Dinner.
Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn made a great screen team. Two of the films they made together were, Bringing Up Baby and The Philadelphia Story. The films share many similar characteristics in their classic screwball structure and in the conventions that they employ, but had different degrees of success among 30s and 40s American film audiences. In both Bringing Up Baby and The Philadelphia Story, Katharine Hepburn plays the lead, who is strong-willed and independent. Both films depict her struggle to resist the ideological codes of society, specifically regarding gender and class. While Hepburn is portrayed as highly independent, she has clear moments of vulnerability throughout both films, which suture her into the dominant code of love and marriage. The film Bringing Up Baby is seen as one of the funniest movies ever made, but on its release it flopped. The fast pace may have confused audiences. In only 30 minutes, Grant goes from restoring a dinosaur skeleton and quarrelling with his fiancée to running after a lawyer across a golf course, chasing spoiled heiress...