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Rusty Parker, a red-headed leggy dancer at Danny McGuire's Night Club in Brooklyn, wants to be a successful broadway star. She enters a contest to be a 'Cover Girl' as a stepping-stone in her career. She reminds the publisher, John Coudair, of his lost love, showgirl Maribelle Hicks. He was engaged to Maribelle, although his wealthy society mother made fun of her. Maribelle left John at the altar when she saw the piano at her wedding. It reminded her of the piano-player she truly loved. Rusty is Maribelle's granddaughter and there are musical sequences with Maribelle dancing to songs from the beginning of the 20th century. Rusty lands on the cover of her grandmother's former fiancé's magazine (as a bride). She is pursued by Coudair's pal, the wealthy theatrical producer, Noel Wheaton. He produces a lavish musical to star Rusty, surrounded by real cover girls of the mid 1940's. Rusty runs down a huge spiral into the arms of dozens of men who seem clumsy next to her ethereal dancing. ... Written by
Jenny Lens <email@example.com>
Columbia Pictures gave Gene Kelly almost complete control over the making of this film, and many of his ideas contributed to its lasting success. He removed several of the sound stage walls so that he, Rita Hayworth, and Phil Silvers could dance along an entire street in one take. He also used trick photography so that he could dance with himself in one sequence. See more »
Danny (Gene Kelly) dances with the mirror image of himself yet the "image" is not reversed, right to left, as a real image would be. See more »
Beautiful Rita, Kern score and Phil Silvers dancing!!!
Two of these things are to be expected, the third is a complete surprise (that would be Phil Silvers dancing).
This is a delightful, if longer than it needs to be musical. A sub-plot with flashbacks and probably the worst Jerome Kern number ever written (Poor John), do not contribute enough to make them worthwhile. It's as if they wrote the movie, realized they didn't have enough material to produce a full-length picture, and added these other scenes to "fill it out". They don't work.
It's funny to see a 1940's musical with Gene Kelly (on loan from M-G-M)clearly taking a backseat to his leading lady. His second act number where he dances with himself is one highlight of the film. Other strong points are "Make Way For Tomorrow" and the lovely, "Long Ago And Far Away" (although I thought it odd that the latter number did not have a dance sequence attached to it). "Put Me To The Test", a number where Rita and Gene get to dance together, is a very good number, but the title song does nothing for me, although it is staged wonderfully.
Rita Hayworth is absolutely breath-taking. Her dancing is excellent, and this is clearly a role that suits her. Some of her hair pieces, however are awful. In a few scenes, the color of them do not match the color of her natural hair. Very distracting.
Phil Silvers is wonderful as Genius, Gene and Rita's friend and co-worker. Seeing him dance, especially as well as he did, was a wonderful surprise.
The major problem I had with this movie was that I never believed the relationship between the three leads. I didn't believe that Kelly and Hayworth were in love, or that Kelly and Silvers were real friends. Can't quite put my finger on it, but I didn't buy it.
Excellent supporting work by Eve Arden, Otto Kruger, Edward Brophy and Leslie Brooks.
6 out of 10
15 of 23 people found this review helpful.
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