Shine on Harvest Moon (1944) Poster

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Pleasant For Sheridan or Morgan Fans
timothymcclenaghan1 April 2005
Too bad the entire film wasn't photographed in Technicolor. The story is very fictionalized, as were all Hollywood musical biographies. Would it be a spoiler to mention that historically Bayes and Norworth didn't live happily ever after? Norworth was #3 of Bayes's five husbands.

Interesting to note that in the earlier Warner's musical "Yankee Doodle Dandy", that Bayes is portrayed as a "heavy", taking Mary Cohan's song away from her.

Insofar as voice dubbing is concerned, all actors are ultimately dubbed, whether with their own singing voice or someone else's. Nobody sings "live" on camera. Not much different than today's music videos where the performer is only doing a lip-sync to the recording (and you thought they had all those electronic instruments and back-up singers hidden in the bushes, right?).

This film is still enjoyable for the music and the performances of the actors. I think it's well worth the time to view it.
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Voice for Sheridan
mjoynercat26 July 2000
When this film was made, "ghost singers" did not get screen credit for dubbing: Ms. Sheridan's singing voice was that of my (deceased) mother-in-law, Lynn Martin. (Incidentally, Lynn Martin was also the voice of Rita Hayworth in "Gilda" !!) We were delighted to catch "Shine on Harvest Moon" on 7/24/2000 on Turner Classic Movies: now we at last have a wonderful copy of my wife's mother's talented voice!
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Ann Sheridan Shines, As Does The Movie
Randy_D7 December 2000
Ann Sheridan and Dennis Morgan, as singing duo Nora Bayes and Jack Norworth, are wonderful portraying the Broadway stars who had to struggle just to perform together.

The beautiful Ann Sheridan does a fine job portraying a women who loves her partner but is willing to make a sacrifice for what she believes will help his career.

Kudos to the production crew for a visually enjoyable movie. Add in a few good musical numbers and you have a fun, uplifting movie with an occasional bittersweet moment thrown in for good measure.

And, with all due respect to Lynn Martin, who did the vocals for Ann Sheridan, I personally would like to have heard Ann Sheridan sing in this movie. Perhaps a special edition will surface one day for Shine On, Harvest Moon.
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Ann Sheridan with a different voice
cinekarine22 September 2005
The comment posted before mine was unfortunately inaccurate. Lynn Martin did provide the vocals for Ann Sheridan in this film. While the studio had trusted her untrained but acceptable voice in a great number of dramas, thrillers and minor musicals before this, they were not ready to let her tackle a major musical with her own voice. The whole idea of a voice double is to sound as similar as possible to the person on screen. Lynn Martin was the perfect choice, even a certain nasal tone, but a much more polished sound. If you have the chance to hear her in quite a few low-budget musicals she sang in at other studios, you will recognize her immediately. She did not have to change her voice much to be a great match for Ann Sheridan and this is why she was chosen. Personally, as much as I love Ann Sheridan, i think she sounded much better with a professional singing voice.

A lot of well-known actors and actresses sang in scores of films but were dubbed just once or twice - that is not unusual at all. The same happened to Dorothy Lamour, Carole Landis, Shirley Temple and Patricia Morison (of KISS ME KATE fame) among others. So this is not even a factor.

(But it is true that Lynn Martin NEVER dubbed Rita Hayworth at any point.)
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Reasonably Good
grandpagbm3 November 2008
Warning: Spoilers
This is a good movie, based on the life of Jack Norworth, song writer and performer who wrote Shine On Harvest Moon. It stars Ann Sheridan and Dennis Morgan, excellent actors of the 1940's, with great supporting roles by Jack Carson, Marie Wilson, and S.Z. Sakall (a very good comedic performer in many musicals and comedies of those days). The movie is a period piece about early 20th century life, but there is a final message at the end of the movie that says, "Buy War Bonds," the only reference to the war. Another interesting fact about the movie is that it is in black-and-white, until the final musical number, when it switches to color. The B&W portion plays well with the time period portrayed by the movie, while the color ending indicates the transition of the story to more modern times, with the final stage act being performed as part of the Ziegfeld Follies. I would watch this movie again.
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Nora Bayes 1880-1928
bkoganbing6 March 2013
Though this was far from the real story of Nora Bayes, Shine On Harvest Moon provided Ann Sheridan with one of her best roles while contracted to Warner Brothers. Dennis Morgan as Jack Norworth her husband and singing partner was also perfectly cast in his role. I suspect this piece of fiction was done because Jack Norworth was still very much alive, he would not leave this mortal coil until 1959. You can see Norworth in a dramatic role in Rene Clair's The Southerner and Norworth also did at least one short subject as song and dance man. I reviewed it here in fact.

Nora was a nice Jewish girl among other things from Joliet, Illinois and while the film makes no reference she was proud of the fact. Norworth was the second of five husbands she would have, there was no happy ever after for them. Only the title song and another song How Can They Tell That I'm Irish were actually identified with her. For whatever reason songs like Has Anybody Here Seen Kelly and Down Where The Wurzberger Flows were left out. Nora was known in vaudeville as the Wurzberger Girl in fact. She also introduced Over There at a bond rally during World War I. You can see Frances Langford playing her and sining Over There with James Cagney in Yankee Doodle Dandy. In 1944 a lot of people were around who remembered Nora Bayes from the stage and no doubt commented on the fact those songs were missing from the film.

There were in fact a lot of period songs interpolated into the original score written by M.K. Jerome and Kim Gannon. Lynn Martin dubbed Ann Sheridan's singing voice and Irene Manning who played a rival performer sang her own material and well. One song was a real gem, Time Waits For No One was recorded in a best selling record by Helen Forrest.

Some years ago as a lad I attended a Yankee old timers day in 1958 and either Albert Von Tilzer who wrote the music and Jack Norworth who wrote the lyrics were introduced. What these two gentlemen collaborated on was Take Me Out To The Ballgame which should have earned them a bundle if they never did anything else. I can't recall which one it was, but both died within a few years of this game. Reference to Norworth's writing baseball ballad is made, but whether he wrote music or lyrics is unclear.

Also in the film are Jack Carson as a magician vaudeville performer and his dumb Dora assistant Marie Wilson. No one was ever as ingenuous in her performing as Marie Wilson, she set the prototype for those players right up to and including Jessica Simpson.

Despite the criticism Shine On Harvest Moon is a delightful film with some great acting, singing, and dancing in it.
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A weak musical propped up by a strong cast
Rupert1728 May 2007
A weak musical propped up by a strong cast with only the title number a stand out from a mediocre crop of songs.

I don't know much about the musical and matrimonial partnership of Nora Bayes and Jack Norworth, but I doubt this movie give is an accurate representation. A previous reviewer noted that Norworth was the 2nd of Baynes five husbands, their union ending in divorce, somewhat souring with fact the sugary, idealistic portrayal of their partnership in this biopic.

Jack Carson and Dennis Morgan made a number of satisfying films together - this is not one of them.

Also, there's a pretty awful song about how dumb one of the characters is. Meant in fun, maybe, but less than rewarding in execution.
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Same rooms as in Good Old Summertime with Judy Garland or no?
rosyrnrn27 October 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This is probably a question for the forums, but just had to say how much I love the actors - always Jack Carson, Ann Sheridan, SZ Sakall - the rest, too. The costumes are so over the top, beautiful. It's a very entertaining movie, funny, with some little bit more serious moments. The love/relationship issues may or may not be historically accurate, but I sure loved the movie.

Towards the end, when Dennis Morgan (Jack) plays "Shine on Harvest Moon" I think for the producer? - aren't these the identical rooms where Judy Garland plays a song for Van Johnson in The Good Old Summertime? Well, the rooms look exactly the same to me, except in B&W this time. Too bad the entire movie wasn't in color - wow, that would have been beautiful, especially the emerald green costume Ann Sheridan wore when singing about how she was from Ireland.

I hope you enjoy the movie, as I did.
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Agree with last post
jyonno121 December 2009
My main reason for watching the movie was Ann Sheridan. I loved watching her on the big screen. The song Jack Carson sang to Marie Wilson eked me too. Did not like it. It also was worth watching for the period clothes. All in All, Not Bad. It was also an education on the way Music was sold then. Something like In the Good old Summertime with Judy Garland.Marie Wilson really played a Great part as she was very Intelligent. She was really Typecast most of the time. I believe she played same type of Character on the Radio too. The Color was a Great idea. I think all Musicals should be in Color,especially 42Nd st. Even Dennis Morgan clothes looked better in Color.
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