Irish Eyes Are Smiling (1944)

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A tunefull account of the life of Ernest R. Ball, composer of many popular Irish songs, including the title's.



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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Edgar Brawley
June Haver ...
Mary 'Irish' O'Neill
Dick Haymes ...
Ernest R. Ball
Al Jackson
Beverly Whitney ...
Lucille Lacey
Maxie Rosenbloom ...
Stanley Ketchel
Veda Ann Borg ...
Belle La Tour
Clarence Kolb ...
Leo Betz
Leonard Warren ...
Opera Singer
Blanche Thebom ...
Opera Singer
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Leo Mostovoy ...
Pawnbroker (scenes deleted)
Hoofer (scenes deleted)


A tunefull account of the life of Ernest R. Ball, composer of many popular Irish songs, including the title's.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

30 August 1945 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

En sång, en kyss, en flicka  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on March 15, 1948 with Dick Haynes reprising his film role. See more »


In playing the piano while singing "Boy Of Mine", you can see a wedding ring on Dick Haymes hand. He was married to Joanne Dru at the time the movie was being filmed. See more »


Belle La Tour: [to Mary] What are you doing in my $85 feathered robe? Take it off!
See more »


Auld Lang Syne
Played as the ship is leaving for Cuba
See more »

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User Reviews

Skewed as biography, amusing as musical
12 October 2000 | by (Dallas, Texas) – See all my reviews

The film is part of a long line of musical biographies of songwriters that has hardly any interest in the person's actual life story. Instead, calling them biographies allows the musicals to cull songs from their catalog for various musical numbers. Still, at times, these films can be pleasant time-wasters. This one, ostensibly about turn-of-the-century songwriter Ernest Ball, is one of these pleasant but unexceptional entries.

Judging from the songs presented in the film, Ball specialized in Irish hokum ("Mother Macree" for example)--lugubrious ballads that wallowed in maternal sentimentality and dreams. Consequently, Dick Haymes portrayal of Ball presents him as a weak passive sort, who is easily pushed around. Seemingly to balance him, June Haver as his romantic interest is incredibly butch--growling, aggressive, and constantly popping people in the eye. While Haymes sings Ball's slow ballads, Haver performs peppy up-tempo numbers (that were not written by Ball). One of these underlines the reversal of gender-expected behavior: "Bessie in a Bustle." Here, Haver sings in male clothing, as various men in drag (with bustles naturally) cavort around her!

It's a pretty out-of-nowhere moment, but seems to fit the general attitude about aggressive women and passive men that's going on in the rest of the film.

Overall, it's a colorful period piece, with plenty to keep a viewer diverted for an hour and a half--and some interesting ideas if you stop to notice them. But it's no landmark musical.

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