A Universal Army enlistment promotion, produced as a musical showcase for Harry James, the Andrews Sisters, Joe E. Lewis, and Donald O'Connor & Peggy Ryan. The film's thin plot has James ... See full summary »
Edward F. Cline
The Andrews Sisters,
Joe E. Lewis
Ruth and her beautiful sister Eileen come to New York's Greenwich Village looking for "fame, fortune and a 'For Rent' sign on Barrow Street". They find an apartment (such as it is!), but ... See full summary »
At the Davis School of the Theatre, run by Jeremy Taswell, where teen-age kids study drama and the serious arts, instructors Johnny Hanley and Alice Taswell are in love. The students, ... See full summary »
Of the singing Beebe brothers, young Mike just wants to be a kid; responsible Dave wants to work in his garage and marry Martha; but feckless Joe thinks his only road to success is through ... See full summary »
"Top Man" is a cute movie. Decent and fun. But it's definitely not up to par with some of the other Donald O'Connor-Peggy Ryan musicals, like "Mister Big" or "Patrick the Great". The songs and dances in "Top Man" are alright. I particularly liked the gypsy number done by O'Connor and Ryan at towards the end of the movie. And Susanna Foster gets some nice songs, too. It was also a joy to see Lillian Gish in a talkie, since I've only seen her in silents.
The only thing about this movie that bothers me is the cast. Yes, this sounds silly, since I was just praising the cast for their talent. And they are all very talented. But, take this for example. O'Connor was 17, and Ryan and Foster were 18. However, Foster looks as if she's in her 20's and sings like she's in her 30's. Thus, her being the love interest for O'Connor is a bit strange. Don't get me wrong. Foster has a gorgeous voice. In fact, she's one of my very favorite singers. But here's what I find very odd: The same year that "Top Man" was made (1943), Foster was in the lavish production of "The Phantom of the Opera", playing the lead, Chrstine. So, the same year Foster's in a very sophisticated and high class movie, they put her in a corny little teenage musical?
Anyways, "Top Man" is cute and all. But if you want some better O'Connor and Ryan, check out "Mister Big", "Patrick the Great", or "The Merry Monahans", where O'Connor has better love interests.
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