Andy's girlfriend Polly is planning to spend Christmas at her grandmother's, which puts a kink in his plans to take her to the country club Christmas party. He agrees (for a fee) to pretend... See full summary »
With his high school graduation behind him, Andy Hardy decides that as an adult, it's time to start living his life. Judge Hardy had hoped that his son would go to college and study law, ... See full summary »
Soldier Joe Allen is on a two-day leave in New York, and there he meets Alice. She agrees to show him the sights and they spend the day together. In this short time they find themselves ... See full summary »
Talented small-town girl Lily Mars hounds producer John Thornway for a part in his new play, but he doesn't want anything to do with stage-struck amateurs. But when Lily follows him to New ... See full summary »
On a train trip West to become a mail order bride Susan Bradley meets a cheery crew of young women traveling out to open a " Harvey House " restaurant at a remote whistle stop to provide ... See full summary »
Four outlaws come to New Jerusalem, a town full of courteous and religious people, to rob the bank. After shooting the president of the bank, only three make it out of town followed by the ... See full summary »
Mary Stevens (Kay Francis) and her old friend Don Andrews (Lyle Talbot) find themselves graduating from medical school at the same time. They decide to set up their respective medical ... See full summary »
At a maternity hospital, future fathers pace the corridors while their wives wait for their babies either anxiously or happily. Efficient and compassionate nurse Miss Bowers keeps the ward ... See full summary »
An Italian-American barber, Joe Thomasello, buys a sweepstakes ticket but doesn't tell his wife, Nora, as she takes a dim view of gambling in any form. The ticket turns out to be the prize ... See full summary »
Mickey Moran, a talented singer and musician, son of a veteran from the show business. Mickey has a partner, Patsi Barton, a pretty girl and also a very talented singer. One day, a big opportunity arrives for Mickey, a big contract to set up his own show. However, things don't go well, and in order to avoid being sent to a work farm, he'll improvise a show in the country, despite the awful weather conditions. Patsi's in love with Mickey, he loves her too, but for him the show must go on, and his big dream maybe will come true: formally stage his play in a big scenario, with a huge production. Written by
Footage from earlier Mickey Rooney film, _Broadway to Hollywood (1933)_, is seen to show flashbacks of Mickey Moran, Rooney's character, as a child performing in vaudeville, in this film. See more »
Obvious stand-in for Patsy as they climb the ladder during "[We Are] Babes in Arms" at the beginning of the film. See more »
Michael C. 'Mickey' Moran:
I'm gonna write a show for us and put on right here in Seaport. Why, it'll be the most up-to-date things these hicks around here have ever seen! Opening night we'll have Max Gordon, Sam Harris, Lee Schubert... Down to give us the once over. How about it, kids?
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This Busby Berkeley musical of the 1930s represents Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland at their best, which in the end really doesn't say "greatness." The film, which involves a recurring reminiscence on the "nostalgia" of the 1910s, is often over-acted, over-sung, and over-choreographed. Judy Garland's portrayal of a girl in love but shunned is reminiscent of almost all of the MGM musical roles in which she partook during her stint that lasted into the late 1940s. The minstrel act is a particularly interesting look at the virulent racism that still plagued American cinema during the Studio Age-Judy Garland in blackface is perhaps one of the most frightening images I have ever encountered.
Though, one cannot approach a film like this with more than a hint of cynicism: Busby Berkeley is arguably the greatest choreographer in the history of film, and though he does not show off the spectacle of his earlier films, like Gold Diggers of 1933 and Gold Diggers of 1935 (which he did not direct), his dance numbers are interesting (for instance, when the town's teenagers partake in a book-burning, throwing into the flames symbols of conformity). The film is sweet, fresh, and bright, and, as the first Arthur Freed musical, serves as one of his better (though certainly not his best).
In all, I give it a 3 out of 4 stars (***).
On a side note, three of the songs that appear in Singing in the Rain appear in this film, predating the Gene Kelly musical by over 15 years: Good Morning, Good Morning, Singing in the Rain (which appears in a montage showing previous MGM musicals), and You Are My Lucky Star.
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