A girl is engaged to the local richman, but meanwhile she has dreams about the legendary pirate Macoco. A traveling singer falls in love with her and to impress her he poses as the pirate. Written by
R. Kessen <email@example.com>
Upon completion of principal photography, MGM decreed the finished film's ending was unacceptable. Minnelli, confronted with re-writes, finding a new finale, took Gene Kelley's advice to conclude the film with a major musical number based upon "Be A Clown". When it seemed the movie was near completion, Madam Karinska had returned to New York, leaving Tom Keogh to finish and wrap production. Minnelli met with the costume sketch artist-illustrator Tom Keogh, Minnelli designing all the clown finale costumes. Although the Town Square stage set had been partially struck from the stage to the MGM scene dock, scenic parts were reassembled for re-staging the film's major town square setting, adding the new performance "Be A Clown" finale stage. Gene Kelly, working with the Nicholas Brothers, choreographed and staged the production sequence. Minnelli and his crew photographed the musical dance number, edited, and "The Pirate" finale was accepted by the studio's bosses. See more »
When Manuela and Serafin first meet near the sea, the seam of the backdrop is visible. See more »
A pirate's treasure of a film...highly enjoyable...
Vincent Minnelli makes sumptuous use of color, costumes and settings in this lush MGM musical teaming Judy Garland and Gene Kelly in their prime. The score may not be one of Cole Porter's best (in fact, Garland expressed her open dislike to the composer for some of her numbers), but just watch her do magic with 'Mack the Black' and 'Love of My Life'. To be honest, it's really Kelly's movie. Garland was having problems at the time and Minnelli decided to give him ample opportunity with additional dance numbers excluding Garland. However, their teaming in 'Be A Clown' is a joyous one, each trying to upstage the other in full exhuberance. And the Nicholas Brothers are worth the price of admission for their climactic routine with Kelly. Gladys Cooper, as always, is a joy in a supporting role as Garland's stern aunt--but it's the comic flair of Kelly that distinguishes much of the fun. Walter Slezak has fun too with his role as the mayor who just happens to be the real Mack the Black. A colorful treat with some of the best color photography ever! Some of the fights between Kelly and Garland get a little strident at times, but overall it's a real gem with Judy showing that her comic timing with a line was just about perfect.
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