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Before writing this review I took a look at George Eells biography of Cole Porter which has a good reference section listing his Broadway shows and original film productions.
To make this film fit for Abbott and Costello whole sections of the plot and entire characters were junked as well as Cole Porter's entire musical score. The barebones of the book by Herbert and Dorothy Fields was retained and the whole business about stock swindling and the Amigo Americano was from the musical. For instance listed as characters in the play were the then Vice President of the United States Henry A. Wallace and the former King Carol of Rumania and his notorious mistress Madame Lupescu. I can't even imagine what they might be doing as characters in an Abbott and Costello comedy.
Cole Porter's scores rarely made it intact to the screen. Usually it was because of his risqué lyrics not playing well in Peoria. However as we learn it was simply because Abbott and Costello fans didn't want their favorites clowning interrupted by musical numbers as they were in so many of their World War II era films.
If that's the case why in heaven's name did Universal buy Mexican Hayride and rework it for them? I'm sure there must have been any number of Cole Porter fans who wanted to see a film adaptation of one of his Broadway shows. Once they had bought their tickets and were seated in the movie house, they must have been sorely disappointed.
The boys have some good routines here, Costello has some funny moments in an interview with reporter Sid Fields and also with elocution teacher Fritz Feld. The highlight of the film of course is Costello in a bull ring trying to get money Abbott swindled in some watered stock case. Problem is the money is in a hat that was tossed in the ring and landed on the bull's horns.
One routine they did was previously done in the Bing Crosby film Double Or Nothing by Martha Raye. Costello won a marathon dance contest doing the Samba for 36 hours and goes into autopilot the exact same way Martha Raye did in Double or Nothing.
It's not the best film from Abbott and Costello and boy are those Cole Porter lovers in for a disappointment.
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