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Old Man Rhythm (1935)

 -  Comedy | Musical  -  2 August 1935 (USA)
6.0
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 93 users  
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A businessman enrolls as a college freshman in order to break up his son's relationship with a gold-digger.

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(story), (additional dialogue), 4 more credits »
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Title: Old Man Rhythm (1935)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Johnny Roberts
George Barbier ...
John Roberts Sr
Barbara Kent ...
Edith Warren
Grace Bradley ...
Marion Beecher
...
Sylvia
Eric Blore ...
'Phil' Phillips
Erik Rhodes ...
Frank Rochet
John Arledge ...
Pinky Parker
...
Colonel
...
Paul Parker
Evelyn Poe ...
Honey
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Storyline

Rich John Roberts, Jr. gets reports that his son, Johnny, is falling for a gold digging blonde at college. So he enrolls as a freshman to try to steer Johnny towards the girl he'd like him to marry. He hits upon the idea to have the blonde believe he lost his business, by writing a letter instructing his partner to wire him that his business went broke. But he gives the letter to a school official who forgets to mail it. Written by Arthur Hausner <genart@volcano.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 August 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Papa's in the Cradle  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

The opening title leaps up from the orchestra music. See more »

Connections

Featured in Mary Pickford: A Life on Film (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Boys Will Be Boys
Music by Lewis E. Gensler
Lyrics by Johnny Mercer
Sung by Betty Grable, Evelyn Poe, Joy Hodges, others
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Fun-Filled Musical Find
29 May 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Old Man Rhythm" is one of those musicals where the studio rounds up talent and creates a story that tries to fit them all in, including whatever specialty acts they are big on. But the plot of this film does not try much to be other than that. It opens with a musical number, on a train, that includes just about every actor in the film. That first scene tells us everything we need to know about the film: it's light and playful and filled with talent.

OMR is driven by the music of Lewis E. Gensler and Johnny Mercer. If you like clever lyrics and toe-tapping tunes, this is a good film to watch. Gensler is talented, but the entire film is Mercerized by the Ogden Nashish lyrics.

Speaking of which, the only slow part of the film is a scene about fleas. Yes, it's true. Apparently the entire scene (apart from being a silly plot device regarding a letter) is just a setup for a poem that is, nevertheless, interesting. The poem is called "Siphonaptera" and if you look it up on Wikipedia, you will learn its origins and its variations.

One more point about the music. It captures a time in the evolution of popular music when you can easily hear the transition from the blues to jazz (and swing). The musical arrangements in this film are filled with examples.

Betty Grable taps en pointe. Hermes Pan arranged the dance numbers, so I guess he might be partly responsible for this difficult feat. Among the other talented performers, I particularly liked Evelyn Poe, though her film career seems to have been short.

The story is not much to write home about. A college boy's father (John Roberts) is concerned that his son (JR, Jr.) is losing his scholarly focus because of a girl (Marion). He enrolls in the same college, hoping to turn the boy's affections toward another girl (Edith) deemed more suitable. Though Junior thinks Marion is the marryin' kind, she proves to be more interested in his familial fortune. They all live in some dormitories that wow and they frequent a soda shop where the local talents shake a leg and croon competently. Which is what the film is all about, after all--the music.

This double-bill special no doubt had the cats boogeying in their theater seats in 1935.


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