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Trish Van Devere,
Poor Andy, all he wants to do is get to town and continue to woo his girl and ask her hand in marriage. Andrew "Andy" Hardy met his sweetheart Kay Wilson in college, but has since served in the military and is now being discharged. Getting back to Kay may be the hardest thing of them all to accomplish. He arrives in town alright, but things start to go awry from there. Question is, will he succeed? Written by
Entertaining viewing for Hardy and Dorothy Ford fans only.
Andy arrives back in Carvel, tumbling off the back of an army truck in front of his folks. The family reunion in the middle of the main street, blocking the traffic flow to the amusement of all concerned, is the best scene in the movie. Andy's been separated (demobbed) from the Army and has but one thought on his mind, proposing to Kay Wilson who he'd met at college.
'Kay Wilson' is played by the (in this movie) maternal Bonita Granville who unfortunately doesn't sing for once. Mickey Rooney looks appropriately much older than his previous movie (he has, after all, come back from service in the Army) in the series but still manages to play the irrepressible 'Andy' as only he could. Lewis Stone and Fay Holden as his folks are wonderful as usual, despite the often insipid script. That's the main problem with this movie. The script is at times puerile and it's only the mostly excellent cast which makes it worth watching. We miss 'Marion' and Polly', while the charming Sarah Haden as 'Aunt Milly' is given few lines. She might as well not be there. Marion is apparently working in New York (it is she who wires the family that Andy is on his way) while we, so far as I noticed, are given no reason for Polly's absence, despite her father's presence.
The standout guest in this movie is the stunning Dorothy Ford as 'Coffy Smith'. Not only is Dorothy tall at 6ft 4", she is both graceful and beautiful. Though as before (and after), the script remains puerile, but the cast do their best to rise above it.
The high point in most Hardy movies - those without Judy Garland, anyway - is the father and son or rather 'man to man' talk between Lewis Stone and Mickey Rooney. In this movie it's on the subject of Andy either going to college and following in the Judge's footsteps, or running off to South America to make his fortune. Unfortunately, the problematic script results in an awkward, almost embarrassing scene between the two. Lewis Stone doesn't look at all well; he was in his late 60s at the time but looks much older (he died in 1953, chasing vandals off his property). Lina Romay as 'Isolbel' sings on two occasions but she's an unsatisfactory substitute for Polly. Hal Hackett as 'Duke' is unimpressive but again, maybe that's the fault of that script.
Overall, this is a necessary part of the Hardy series but it deserved a much better script. Despite this reservation, I can still recommend it.
My copy came as one half of a double bill region 4 DVD (with 'The Perils of Pauline'). It was made from an extremely poor print and should be avoided at all costs.
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