6.6/10
1,704
30 user 20 critic

Babes in Arms (1939)

Unrated | | Comedy, Musical | 13 October 1939 (USA)
The struggle of two talented young artists, to make their own way in the show business.

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Tommy Williams desperately wants to get to Broadway, but as he is only singing in a spaghetti house for tips he is a long way off. He meets Penny Morris, herself no mean singer, and through... See full summary »

Director: Busby Berkeley
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Fay Bainter
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Jimmy Connors and his girl-friend want to take part in Paul Whiteman's highschool's band contest, but they cannot afford the fare. But per chance the meet Paul Whiteman in person and are ... See full summary »

Director: Busby Berkeley
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Paul Whiteman and Orchestra
Girl Crazy (1943)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Rich kid Danny Churchill (Rooney) has a taste for wine, women and song, but not for higher education. So his father ships him to an all-male college out West where there's not supposed to ... See full summary »

Directors: Norman Taurog, Busby Berkeley
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Gil Stratton
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

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 »

Director: George B. Seitz
Stars: Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland, Lewis Stone
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

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 »

Director: George B. Seitz
Stars: Lewis Stone, Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

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 »

Director: Norman Taurog
Stars: Judy Garland, Van Heflin, Fay Bainter
Musical | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Two vaudeville performers fall in love, but find their relationship tested by the arrival of WWI.

Director: Busby Berkeley
Stars: Judy Garland, George Murphy, Gene Kelly
Summer Stock (1950)
Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A small-town farmer, down on her luck, finds her homestead invaded by a theatrical troupe invited to stay by her ne'er-do-well sister.

Director: Charles Walters
Stars: Judy Garland, Gene Kelly, Eddie Bracken
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Musical remake of 1940 "Shop Around the Corner" by Lubitch.

Director: Robert Z. Leonard
Stars: Judy Garland, Van Johnson, S.Z. Sakall
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Cricket West is a hopeful actress with a plan and a pair of vocal chords that bring down the house. Along with her eccentric aunt, she plays host to the local jockeys, whose leader is the ... See full summary »

Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney, Ronald Sinclair
Certificate: Passed Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Steve Raleight wants to produce a show on Broadway. He finds a backer, Herman Whipple and a leading lady, Sally Lee. But Caroline Whipple forces Steve to use a known star, not a newcomer. ... See full summary »

Director: Roy Del Ruth
Stars: Robert Taylor, Eleanor Powell, George Murphy
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Judy Bellaire, played by Judy Garland, is the center of trouble at her exclusive private and very conservative school. She is expelled when she starts singing in a Jazzy style in her music ... See full summary »

Director: Edwin L. Marin
Stars: Allan Jones, Judy Garland, Fanny Brice
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Joe Moran
...
Judge Black
...
Rosalie Essex
...
Florrie Moran
Betty Jaynes ...
Molly Moran
Douglas McPhail ...
Don Brice
...
Jeff Steele
...
Dody Martini
...
Bobs (as John Sheffield)
...
Madox
Barnett Parker ...
William
Ann Shoemaker ...
Mrs. Barton
...
Martha Steele
Edit

Storyline

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 Alejandro Frias

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The big musical fun show!

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 October 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los hijos de la farándula  »

Box Office

Budget:

$748,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Mickey Rooney-Judy Garland-Busby Berkeley full-throttle production number, "God's Country" (music by Harold Arlen, lyrics by E.Y. Harburg), had been introduced on Broadway by Jack Whiting and The Five Reillys in the 1937 musical, "Hooray for What!" MGM bought the screen rights to the show, which never was filmed. See more »

Goofs

During the girls' duet, Patsy Barton begins her solo, and Mickey Moran switches from cello plucking to piano thumping. However, the music continues as it was before, and we don't hear any amazing sounds on the piano in spite of Mickey's efforts. See more »

Quotes

Michael C. 'Mickey' Moran: No, no, no, judge! You don't understand; she don't understand, either. Oh, she don't mean no harm to us, but... we're not her kind of people - or yours, either. We belong in show business. We gotta start young so we can get some steel in our backbone. Well, gee, we're developing. You couldn't teach us a trade: we've GOT one. And you couldn't do without it... Oh, we're only kids now, but someday we're gonna be the guys that make ya laugh and cry and think that there's a little stardust left on ...
See more »

Connections

Features Riffraff (1936) See more »

Soundtracks

A-Tisket, A-Tasket
(uncredited)
Traditional Nursery Rhyme
Sung in the "Babes in Arms" number by a chorus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Good, but not Great

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.


5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
DVD please! Francois-Antoine
Cammie King BriZanna
Betty Jaynes haley86_2004
good morning kcrazycl
Looking for the Script of Babes in Arms susan-jodon
Discuss Babes in Arms (1939) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?