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, ...
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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 »
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 »
Paul Whiteman and Orchestra
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 »
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 »
Andy Hardy is about to graduate from high school and thinks he's pretty big stuff, so he hires a secretary, Kathryn Land. Kathryn and Polly Benedict, Andy's girlfriend, help him pass his ... See full summary »
Discovery by Flo Ziegfeld changes a girl's life but not necessarily for the better, as three beautiful women find out when they join the spectacle on Broadway: Susan, the singer who must ... See full summary »
Acrobat Eddie Marsh is in the army now. His first act is to become friendly with Kathryn Jones, the colonel's pretty daughter. Their romance hits a few snags, including disapproval from her... 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, but Andy isn't sure that's what he wants to do so he heads off to New York City to find a job. Too proud to accept any help from Betsy Booth, Andy finds that living on his own isn't so easy. With perseverance he eventually finds a job and even gets to date the pretty receptionist in his office. He also has to face several of life's lessons leading him to conclude that he may still have a bit of growing up to do. Written by
Four songs prerecorded by Judy Garland were not used in the film: Cole Porter's "Easy to Love" (available on the Rhino CD, "Judy Garland: Collectors' Gems from the M-G-M Films"); the patriotic "America (My Country Tis of Thee)" (written by Henry Carey and Samuel Francis Smith); plus two religious songs: "Abide with Me" and "The Rosary." Miss Garland's one musical moment in the release print was her unaccompanied rendition of "Happy Birthday to You" (music and lyrics by Mildred J. Hill and Patty S. Hill). The movie's original poster raves, "Mickey woos! Judy sings! Best Hardy yet!" See more »
Following his graduation from high school, a small-town teenager decides to try his luck learning about life and making it on his own in New York City. Where he encounters the death of a disillusioned, penniless young friend and the seductive wiles of a glamorous "older woman" he encounters at his office job. Not to mention the wrath of the censors (who forced the studio the change the cause of death from a suicide to a heart attack) as well as the Catholic church (whose Legion of Decency damned the film with an "objectionable for children" rating). Hard to believe that an episode in the ebullient Andy Hardy series caused such controversy, but it is this film's commendable attempt to portray the dilemmas of youth with honesty and candor (incredible for 1941) that make it the most durable and disarming entry of the entire series. As contemporary today as it was 60 years ago, "Life Begins for Andy Hardy" is blessed with, besides a refreshingly adult screenplay that evokes emotions unchanged by the passage of time, astoundingly "mature" performances by Mickey Rooney (for once underplaying) and Judy Garland (displaying a sincerity and warmth without ever singing a note).
Rooney's portrayal of a good-hearted teenager who decent instincts hardly prepare him for the brutal reality of survival in the "Big City" will strike resonant chords with anyone in a similar situation 60 years later. And, in addition to Rooney and Ms. Garland, sterling performances are contributed by the Hardy regulars (Lewis Stone, never more sage or heartrending as Andy's concerned father); the lovely Patricia Dane, as Andy's office co-worker and would-be seducer; and Ray McDonald, heartbreaking as a penniless aspiring actor reduced to living (and starving) in Central Park. A tacked-on happy ending and jarring lapses in continuity (indicating heavy studio re-cutting and re-shooting) fail to undermine the sweet sadness of this most unusual MGM drama--flirting with themes that would be dealt with far more candidly and cruelly some 20 years later in such innocents-lost-in-the-city classics as "The Rat Race" and "Breakfast at Tiffanys," of which "Life Begins for Andy Hardy" is a most poignant pre-cursor.
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