5.9/10
1,033
33 user 11 critic

Second Chorus (1940)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance, Musical | 3 January 1941 (USA)
When perennial college students Danny O'Neill and Hank Taylor are forced to make it on their own, the competitive pair get jobs with Artie Shaw's band and reunite with ex-manager Ellen Miller.

Director:

Writers:

(original story), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

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

People who liked this also liked... 

Roberta (1935)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

In Paris, a man clueless about fashion suddenly inherits his aunt's dress shop, while his bandleader friend reunites with his old flame.

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Irene Dunne, Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers
Royal Wedding (1951)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Tom and Ellen Bowen are a brother and sister dance act whose show closes in New York. Their agent books them in London for the same period as the Royal Wedding. They travel by ship where ... See full summary »

Director: Stanley Donen
Stars: Fred Astaire, Jane Powell, Peter Lawford
Biography | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The story of married couple Irene Castle and Vernon Castle, sensational ballroom dancers prior to World War I.

Director: H.C. Potter
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edna May Oliver
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

After his wife discovers a telltale diamond bracelet, impresario Martin Cortland tries to show he's not chasing after showgirl Sheila Winthrop. Choreographer Robert Curtis gets caught in ... See full summary »

Director: Sidney Lanfield
Stars: Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Robert Benchley
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A Navy sailor tries to rekindle a romance with the woman he loves while on liberty in San Francisco.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Randolph Scott
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The Acunas, a rich Argentine family, have the tradition that the daughters have to get married in order, oldest first. When sister #1 gets married, sisters #3 and #4 put pressure on Maria, ... See full summary »

Director: William A. Seiter
Stars: Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Adolphe Menjou
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A budding romance between a ballet master and a tap dancer becomes complicated when rumors surface that they're already married.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton
Carefree (1938)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A psychiatrist agrees to hypnotize his friend's girlfriend in order to convince her to accept his proposals of marriage, but she ends up falling for the psychiatrist instead.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Ralph Bellamy
Blue Skies (1946)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Jed Potter looks back on a love triangle conducted over the course of years and between musical numbers. Dancer Jed loves showgirl Mary, who loves compulsive nightclub-opener Johnny, who ... See full summary »

Directors: Stuart Heisler, Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby, Joan Caulfield
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Lady Alyce Marshmorton must marry soon, and the staff of Tottney Castle have laid bets on who she'll choose, with young Albert wagering on "Mr. X." After Alyce goes to London to meet a beau... See full summary »

Director: George Stevens
Stars: Fred Astaire, George Burns, Gracie Allen
Certificate: Passed Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Johnny Brett and King Shaw are an unsuccessful dance team in New York. A producer discovers Brett as the new partner for Clare Bennett, but Brett, who thinks he is one of the people they lent money to gives him the name of his partner.

Director: Norman Taurog
Stars: Fred Astaire, Eleanor Powell, George Murphy
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Flying Tiger Fred Atwell sneaks away from his famous squadron's personal appearance tour and goes incognito for several days of leave. He quickly falls for photographer Joan Manion, ... See full summary »

Director: Edward H. Griffith
Stars: Fred Astaire, Joan Leslie, Robert Benchley
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Danny O'Neill
...
Ellen Miller
...
Artie Shaw
...
J. Lester Chisholm
...
Hank Taylor
...
Stu
Jimmy Conlin ...
Mr. Dunn (as Jimmy Conlon)
Don Brodie ...
Hotel Clerk
Marjorie Kane ...
Secretary
...
Receptionist
Willa Pearl Curtis ...
Scrubwoman
...
Artie Shaw's Orchestra (as Artie Shaw and His Band)
Edit

Storyline

Danny and Hank are surprised when Artie Shaw hires competent manager Ellen away from their college band. The two trumpet players scheme to get into Shaw's outfit themselves, each trying to trump the other's plays. Written by Diana Hamilton <hamilton@gl.umbc.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 January 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Amor de mi vida  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

While Fred Astaire was making this film, Ginger Rogers was making Kitty Foyle (1940). This went on to win her the Academy Award for Best Actress. When she won, Astaire sent her a telegram simply reading "Ouch". See more »

Goofs

At c.3 minutes Danny's chair suddenly jumps to immediately (and intimately) next to Ellen's left side at the table.. See more »

Quotes

Danny O'Neill: It seems to me I smell a mouse.
Ellen Miller: Somewhere around the house.
See more »

Connections

Featured in South of Reno (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Dig It
Music by Hal Borne
Lyrics Johnny Mercer
Played by the Perennials and sung by Fred Astaire (uncredited)
Danced by Fred Astaire and Paulette Goddard (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Only Watchable Because of Astaire
8 July 2004 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

There are not many strong points to "Second Chorus", and it is really only watchable because of Fred Astaire, whose talent and charisma provide for some good moments. The writing is noticeably weak, and the rest of the production is not strong enough to overcome the faulty story-line and the mediocre dialogue. The whole premise of the college band does not work for a moment, and there is never a time when the viewer is not overly conscious that the whole situation is contrived.

To be sure, some of Astaire's most enjoyable pictures have lightweight plots, which allow him and the rest of the cast to be the center of attention. But the good ones are much more creative than this, and they also come with much better characters and dialogue. As slight as the story lines may be in "Top Hat" or "Swing Time", you don't think about it while you are watching them, because everything else is of such high quality. "Second Chorus", on the other hand, seems thrown together, as if they just hoped that Astaire could keep it afloat by himself.

That's not to criticize the rest of the cast, who do their best. Paulette Goddard can be very charming, but her character here gives her very little to work with. She does manage to get a couple of nice moments out of it, anyway. Burgess Meredith is stuck with a character who is both ill-defined and annoying, so he never has any chance to show what he could do.

It's worth watching once, as is practically anything that stars Astaire. There is at least one very good number, and most of the time it is watchable, as long as your expectations are not too high.


12 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?