6.6/10
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Stage Door Canteen (1943)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 22 November 1943 (UK)
"Dakota," a young soldier on a pass in New York City, visits the famed Stage Door Canteen, where famous stars of the theatre and films appear and host a recreational center for servicemen ... See full summary »

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(original screenplay)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Kenny Baker
...
...
Ralph Bellamy
...
Edgar Berger
...
...
Ray Bolger
...
Ina Claire
Katharine Cornell ...
Katherine Cornell
...
...
Lynn Fontaine
...
Helen Hayes
...
...
Hugh Herbert
...
Jean Hersholt
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Storyline

"Dakota," a young soldier on a pass in New York City, visits the famed Stage Door Canteen, where famous stars of the theatre and films appear and host a recreational center for servicemen during the war. Dakota meets a pretty young hostess, Eileen, and they enjoy the many entertainers and a growing romance. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Musical | Romance | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

22 November 1943 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Chuva de Estrelas  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ed Wynn provided the voice of the Mad Hatter in Walt Disney's film, Alice in Wonderland. See more »

Quotes

Dubious Army Sergeant: Look, I've been in both these here wars and I've been in plenty of joints, but I just can't figure this one out.
Dakota Smith: Whaddya mean, Sarge?
Dubious Army Sergeant: Well, you come in, you get free chow, free entertainment, free dancing, and with dames that come right up and ask for out to. What I'd like to know is, when do we get clipped?
See more »

Crazy Credits

All rights granted by the American Theater Wing which gratefully acknowledges and credits the producers, stars and members of all the theatrical unions, guilds, crafts and associations for their participation in the creation and continuance of the original Stage Door Canteen. See more »

Connections

Featured in Showbiz Goes to War (1982) See more »

Soundtracks

Flight of the Bumble Bee
(1900) (uncredited)
Music by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Played by Yehudi Menuhin on violin with piano accompaniment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

mixed bag of period performance and quick cameos
21 July 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

In wartime, a group of soldiers stop off at a canteen before they are posted to heaven knows where. In this canteen they are entertained and served by luminaries from stage and screen (so much fun for the viewer spotting big names in little roles). The soldiers (California, Dakota, and Tex) are the lynchpins who carry the paper-thin story around delightful performances from the likes of Ethel Merman, Ray Bolger, Gracie Fields, Benny Goodman with Peggy Lee, Kay Kyser, Xavier Cugat, and Count Basie.

Blink and you might miss (a few names for a taster) Tallulah Bankhead, Ina Claire, Judith Anderson, Aline MacMahon, Katherine Cornell, the Lunts, George Jessel, Ed Wynn, Ralph Bellamy, George Raft, May Whitty, Harpo Marx, Ned Sparks, and Dorothy Fields. You'll remember Katharine Hepburn as she goes all patriotic at the end of the movie.

Is it a good film? Probably not, but it is certainly historically interesting and probably has the most big names in one movie. The three soldier boys stand for all their compatriots who went to war'during both that conflict and the ones which followed. They aren't glorified, but are simply depicted as young lads who like dancing with girls and being treated with courtesy. We may never know what happens to California, Dakota, and Tex (and millions like them) but 'Stage Door Canteen' gives you a bit of their lives, and a snapshot of the wartime canteen.


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