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St. Louis 1903. The well-off Smith family has four beautiful daughters, including Esther and little Tootie. 17-year old Esther has fallen in love with the boy next door who has just moved in, John. He however barely notices her at first. The family is shocked when Mr. Smith reveals that he has been transfered to a nice position in New York, which means that the family has to leave St. Louis and the St. Louis Fair. Written by
The entire cast and crew were immediately impressed with Vincente Minnelli's attention to detail in every shot. He had consulted author Sally Benson on how the interiors of the Smith home should look, and she had provided a wealth of first-hand information. As a result, the look of each set was near perfection according to the time period. According to Mary Astor, "The only anachronisms were the girls' long-swinging hairdos. Girls 'put their hair up' as soon as they got out of pigtails, the first instant they were allowed to by reluctant parents. It was a symbol, like the first long pants for boys." See more »
Early in the movie the father mentions the Baltimore Orioles. By mid-1903 (the approximate time at the beginning of this movie) while there was no major league team named the Baltimore Orioles there was a AAA team the Baltimore Orioles. In fact when the movie was filmed, the Baltimore Orioles still did not exist as a major league team (would join the American League in 1954, coincidentally moving from St. Louis where they were the St. Louis Browns). See more »
You'll all be safe with me; I've got twelve guns in my room!
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A bit of cake and a song to blow away the wind of change.
A film that is firmly ticking all the boxes for those looking for a family classic to admire and tap your feet along with. This delightful musical deals with one family and their struggle to deal with the changing of the times at the turn of the century. When the Father is requested to move to New York permanently with his job, the rest of the family are not that keen to leave their memories and their beloved home in St. Louis, and in to the mix is the varying degrees of blossoming love involving the elder daughters and their respective beaus.
This film is just so gorgeous on many fronts, the colour beautifully realises the tremendous scope director Vincent Minnelli brings with his recreation of the era, the attention to detail is quality supreme. The story is good and earthy, a sort of tale to have the viewer hankering for the good old days before the world got itself in one big hurry. The songs are crackers, enjoy standards such as The Boy Next Door, The Trolley Song, and the simply precious Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. The cast are across the board doing good work but it is of course Judy Garland who carries the movie firmly on her slender shoulders, and here she has never been prettier, and her voice is practically as good as it ever was in her career.
A film for all the family to enjoy, a film that is from the top echelons of musicals, and a film that simply demands you relax and enjoy.
Right, I'm off to get a piece of cake... 9/10
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