A tough, womanizing high-stakes gambler known only as Tennessee has an uneasy relationship with Duchess, madam of a thinly-disguised bordello, and no other friends at all. But he's saved ... See full summary »
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When Phil Corey's band arrives at the Idaho ski resort its pianist Ted Scott is smitten with a Norwegian refugee he has sponsored, Karen Benson. When soloist Vivian Dawn quits, Karen stages an ice show as a substitute.
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An actress, Julie Beck, finds out that she is ill and has only a short time to live. She becomes taken with Hitty, a young orphan prone to dreaming. Julie soon decides to adopt the child so... See full summary »
Among those who are fighting to have Congress re-establish the military academy at West Point in the beginning of the nineteenth century is a young Washington socialite, Carolyn Bainbridge.... See full summary »
Unlike many musicals from Warners and MGM, the scenes of stage performance in those from 20th Century Fox look as though they could actually be performed on a stage, with straight front shooting, and relatively little camera movement, except for close-ups. This approach works, if you have actors who can draw you in simply by their talent, Talent is abundant here, and the musical numbers are believably staged. Fortunately, there are many of these: enough to carry the hackneyed plot. After more than twelve years in films, Jack Oakie could still do comic dance and joke routines far superior to those of most; and is helped wonderfully by June Havoc, who should have received one of the co-star billings in the titles, instead of being listed second in the supporting cast. John Payne was the studio's dependable leading man, in both musicals and light drama. The beautiful Lynn Bari, who never broke through to star status, shines in the thankless role of the selfish society girl.
But Alice Faye is at her best in her last major musical for Fox. It's easy to see why Archie Bunker occasionally referred to her as his feminine ideal. She is gorgeous in Technicolor close-ups. Here, as in other films she wears period costumes more convincingly than most other actresses, who seem to be dressing up for a costume party. Her voice was unique, and her delivery understated; unlike many of her contemporaries, she can still be heard on CDs. I didn't count, but she must have sung ten or more numbers, alone or with Payne. Oakie and Havoc, including an opening and closing rendition of her signature "You'll Never Know". In a years later TV interview, she commented that toward the end of her Fox career she was being replaced by Betty Grable, whose more overt sex appeal made her famous during the war years, but whose career as a top attraction did not last as many years as Faye's (about ten) What impressed me was that she made that comment without any tone of bitterness. Incidentally, this is not a criticism of Grable, who had a winning, self-deprecating personality in later years. In another TV interview, when she was asked how she became a star, she responded: I could sing a little, dance a little, and act a little, but I had great-looking legs. I can't help comparing these two ladies, both of whom had long-lasting show business marriages, and both of whom seemed to be nice persons, with some contemporary "stars".
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