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Covering the tulip festival in Little Delft, Michigan, reporter Henry Taggart takes a room at an inn ran by an eccentric old Dutchman, Mr. Van Maaster and his seven daughters. The eldest, Regina, is spoiled and stage-struck while Billie, Victor, Albert, Cornelius, Peter and George work there as boys. Henry, momentarily attracted to Regina, realizes he is in love with Billie when he hears her sing. Billie, resists his attentions, believing him the property of Regina since it is a Van Maaster family tradition that no girls in the family can marry until the eldest has. Billie admits her love for Henry but Regina will not relent. The old man trails Regine to New York where she says she has eloped, and asks that Billie marry Henry. Six couples in wedding clothes stand at the altar in the Little Delft church; Billie and Henry and the five other sisters with their intended. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Although the onscreen credits say "original screenplay", a $200,000 lawsuit was filed against the screenwiters, MGM and producer Joe Pasternak by playwright Ferenc Herczeg in 1949, claiming they took the idea from his 1903 play. Herczeg was in a Nazi concentration camp in 1942 when the film was released, and didn't hear about it until 1948. The case was settled out of court for a substantial amount. See more »
"Seven Sweethearts" is about a journalist who travels to Holland, Michigan to do a story about tulip time there and falls in love. The owner of the hotel has seven young, lovely daughters, all with men's names, who live in an isolated little world of clogs and tulips. One of them is pretty Billie (Kathryn Grayson) with whom the jaded reporter falls in love. All the girls, with the exception of the ambitious, cold Reggie (Marsha Hunt) have boyfriends and are aching to get married. But tradition states that the oldest girl must marry first.
This movie seemed very long to me, strange, and somewhat boring. It's filled with B actors, with the exception of Heflin, Grayson, and character actor S.K. Sakall, who hands in one of the best acting scenes toward the end of the film when he has a confrontation with Billie. Grayson had a thin, fluttery coloratura soprano that nevertheless possessed some beautiful high notes and pianissimos, and she entertains throughout with songs and arias such as "Je suis Titania." She's good in her role. Heflin seems out of place but is quite likable.
For those who don't know, the oldest girl marrying first was and perhaps still is a tradition in many cultures. The ending is cute, but this is still a cloying film, and it's hard to believe that this family had no relatives in Holland that they were concerned about during wartime. I suppose the idea was to take everyone out of the war for a while.
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