Alpha's been raised along scientific principles, and will make Mike Regan a great human interest story for his paper. But when his interview prompts Alpha to run away from the institute and... See full summary »
An abandoned baby is raised by three men: the Rev. Andrews, cantor Feldman, and Officer O'Donnell. When Feldman and O'Donnell each find a woman to fall in love with, they both think of ... See full summary »
Biography of songwriter, Broadway pioneer, Jerome Kern. Unable to find immediate success in the USA, Kern sought recognition abroad. He journeyed to England where his dreams of success became real and where he met his future wife Eva.
Van Johnson is a navy pilot in WWII, who has been shot down in the Pacific on a bombing mission. He and a wounded comrade are the only survivors of the mission and are lost at sea. As they ... See full summary »
Andy's girlfriend Polly is planning to spend Christmas at her grandmother's, which puts a kink in his plans to take her to the country club Christmas party. He agrees (for a fee) to pretend... See full summary »
Charles returns to Paris to reminisce about the life he led in Paris after it was liberated. He worked on "Stars and Stripes" when he met Marion and Helen. He would marry and be happy ... See full summary »
Abigail Chandler has written her stuffy Boston relatives that she's a successful opera singer in New York. In reality, she works at a burlesque house and is billed as High-C Susie. When her... See full summary »
"Mike" goes to live with her pregnant older sister, Babs, who plays string bass in Iturbi's orchestra. And the orchestra is rapidly turning completely female, what with the draft. As the orchestra travels around the country, Babs' fellow orchestra members intercept and hide her War Office telegram, to protect the baby. Written by
The member of the band at the Army base who breaks up Jimmy Durante's performance of "Umbriago" by singing in front of the microphone is Eddie Jackson (ne Edward Jacobs), Durante's long time partner in the night-club team of Clayton, Jackson and Durante. The trio performed for years on vaudeville and at New York's Club Durant (sic) but it was the bottom-billed Jimmy who became the star. Lou Clayton, who gave up show business to manage his partner's career, made Jimmy a millionaire. See more »
You'd think that any movie with June Allyson and Margaret O'Brien, Hollywood's two most famous "town criers," would be miserable, but "Music for Millions" is wonderful. Yes, there are tears. But with Jimmy Durante, there's also plenty to laugh about...and with Jose Iturbi there is plenty to sing about, although of course Iturbi plays, and doesn't sing.
Iturbi is the conductor of an orchestra whose male members are being swallowed into the war effort (by the end of the movie, there's only one man left in the orchestra besides Iturbi). Allyson is a bassist (NOT a cellist) who is pining away for her husband, missing in action in the Pacific. O'Brien is Allyson's baby sister "Mike," an eternal optimist and fiercely loyal to her sister. Durante is the manager, a frustrated musician himself and saddled with always making plans for things that you just can't make plans for.
Really, the star of the movie is the music itself, and it's some of the best you'll hear. Iturbi's "Clair de Lune" alone is enough to bring tears, and the first movement of Grieg's piano concerto--most of which we get to hear, when O'Brien isn't interrupting--is majestic. Durante has two numbers of his own, both hilarious reminders of why he was so well-liked.
I figure I'm pretty cynical, but even I was smiling through tears at the end. This is a terrific movie.
By the way, if you're interested in Jose Iturbi, please visit my new website, www.manyfountains.com to learn more about this great pianist and conductor.
11 of 13 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?