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Words and Music (1948)

6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 730 users  
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Fictionalized story of the songwriting partnership of Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Perry Como ...
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Tom Drake ...
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Storyline

Encomium to Larry Hart (1895-1943), seen through the fictive eyes of his song-writing partner, Richard Rodgers (1902-1979): from their first meeting, through lean years and their breakthrough, to their successes on Broadway, London, and Hollywood. We see the fruits of Hart and Rodgers' collaboration - elaborately staged numbers from their plays, characters' visits to night clubs, and impromptu performances at parties. We also see Larry's scattered approach to life, his failed love with Peggy McNeil, his unhappiness, and Richard's successful wooing of Dorothy Feiner. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The BIGGEST musical! See more »


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 December 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ena tragoudi, mia zoi  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,799,970 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cut from the film was the Perry Como rendition of "Lover." However, in the movie trailer, Mr. Como partially sings the waltz. The MGM Studio Orchestra plays "Lover" as the movie's opening credits run. Bonuses on the 2007 DVD, issued by Warner Home Video, include the trailer and footage of Mr. Como's two deleted songs, "Lover" (in a reconstruction of the film's opening) and four takes of "You're Nearer." Audio-only numbers on the DVD include Betty Garrett's complete rendition of "Way Out West (On West End Avenue)," which was shortened in the release print; "My Funny Valentine," sung by Miss Garrett; "My Heart Stood Still" and "I Feel at Home With You," sung by Mr. Como; "Falling in Love With Love," sung by Gene Kelly and Vera-Ellen (probably dubbed by Anita Ellis); an extended version of "Manhattan," sung by Mickey Rooney, Tom Drake and Marshall Thompson; plus an extended version of the sequence comprised of "On Your Toes/The Girl Friend/This Can't Be Love," sung by Eileen Wilson (who dubbed Cyd Charisse), Dee Turnell and chorus. See more »

Goofs

The party at which Lorenz Hart meets Peggy Lorgan McNeil takes place during the 1920s, yet the women at the party all are wearing dresses and hairstyles from the 1940s. See more »

Quotes

Lorenz Hart: Miserable? Me? I'm always happy!
Dorothy Feiner Rodgers: No one's always happy.
Lorenz Hart: Alright, so I'm slightly miserable
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in It's a Great Feeling (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

Manhattan
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
From the musical "The Garrick Gaieties" (1925)
Performed by Mickey Rooney, Tom Drake (dubbed by Bill Lee) and Marshall Thompson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
THE BEST OF MGM'S ALL-STAR MUSICALS
3 September 1999 | by See all my reviews

During the 1940's, MGM produced a number of All-Star musicals. The most notable being The Ziegfeld Follies, Till the Clouds Roll By, and Words and Music. The Ziegfeld film is most remembered for its comedy routines: Fanny Brice, Red Skelton, Victor Moore, and Judy Garland's satirical "The Great Lady Gives an Interview". The other two films are idealized biographies of Jerome Kern ("Clouds") and Rodgers and Hart ("Words"), of which the latter is far and away the more entertaining. The Kern film followed closely on the death of the revered composer and is too respectful for its own good. "Words and Music", on the other hand, benefits greatly from the presence of Mickey Rooney (as Larry Hart) and the always delightful Betty Garrett. But, most of all, it's the wide variety of songs that Rodgers and Hart produced that make it such a joy to watch. From June Allyson's lively "Thou Swell" (a highlight in her career) to the dramatic "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue" ballet with Gene Kelly and Vera-Ellen (a forerunner of the sensual ballet's that Kelly performed in "An American in Paris" and "Singing in the Rain". And of course, there's the wonderful (and final) teaming of Rooney and Judy Garland (the amusing "I Wish I Were in Love Again").

From beginning to end, this is the best of MGM. Don't miss it.


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