Bandleader Cab Calloway is tiring of his sexy girlfriend Minnie, who in turn is jealous of Cab's manager Nettie. When Nettie gets Cab a job at the Brass Hat Club, Minnie retaliates for his imagined infidelity by setting gangster Boss Mason, owner of a rival club, against him. Will she regret her action before it's too late? (This plot resolves halfway through the film; the rest is a series of 'soundies' featuring the Calloway band's inimitable jive). All-black cast. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
When Cab takes the wounded Minnie back into his room, the furniture has changed position - the bed is now away from the wall and in the middle of the room, and the chair is in the corner of the room where the bed used to be. See more »
My jaw dropped shortly after the start of the movie, when Cab Calloway sang "Minnie's a Hepcat Now" solo a cappella. This was a big band leader who actually had all the music an audience needed right inside himself. An extraordinary performer; and though the rest of the movie is packed with an abundance of band numbers, he never allows a dull musical moment. Like some of the songs Cab Calloway sang, the 1947 HI-DE-HO movie mixes pathos and joie de vivre against the background of a gritty story. In a musical performance like the "Saint James Infirmary" seen here, the mixture is funny and powerful. In the plot line of the movie, it's less successful.
Unfortunately, in the European TV broadcast I caught, I didn't notice that "Dusty Fletcher does his famous 'Open the Door Richard' sketch" as in the version someone else saw. An odd thing I did notice was that in the nightclub scenes when the plot is in its long suspension near the end, the dancers seem sized wrongly for the perspective, as if they were dancing in front of a screen on which the band was projected.
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