7.1/10
1,180
32 user 8 critic

Three Little Words (1950)

Unrated | | Biography, Comedy, Musical | 12 July 1950 (USA)
The story of the successful Tin Pan Alley songwriting team of Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby is told loosely and lightheartedly.

Director:

Writer:

(screenplay)
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On TV

Airs Mon. Feb. 27, 8:30 AM on TCM

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Eileen Percy
...
Charlie Kope
...
Terry Lordel
...
Mrs. Carter De Haven (as Gloria De Haven)
...
Himself
Harry Shannon ...
Clanahan
...
...
Al Masters
Carleton Carpenter ...
Dan Healy
George Metkovich ...
Al Schacht
Harry Mendoza ...
Himself (as The Great Mendoza)
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Storyline

Song-and-dance man Bert Kalmar can't continue his stage career after an injury for a while, so he has to earn his money as a lyricist. Perchance he meets composer Harry Ruby and their first song is a hit. Ruby gets Kalmar to marry is former partner Jessie Brown, and Kalmar and Jessie prevent Ruby from getting married to the wrong girls. But due to the fact that Ruby has caused a backer's withdrawal for a Kalmar play, they end their relation. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 July 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Drei kleine Worte  »

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

Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby were friends of Fred Astaire from their early days together in vaudeville. Astaire said the film was one of his all-time favorites. See more »

Goofs

Wjhen Astaire, Wynn, and Skelton are talking about the play never being produced, there are several pictures of M.G.M. stars on the wall. First, from left to right, is Judy Garland, then Spencer Tracey, then Katharine Hepburn, and another I could not identify. The time period in the movie was at that point during the mid 1930s, but those photos were all from the late 1940s. See more »

Quotes

Eileen Percy: [singing] I love you so much, I can't conceal it, / I love you so much, it's a wonder you don't feel it.
See more »


Soundtracks

So Long! Oo-Long (How Long You Gonna Be Gone?)
Written by Harry Ruby, Bert Kalmar
Sung by Fred Astaire, Red Skelton
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Looks Good, Feels Good
28 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This was a wonderful, feel-good movie with tons of songs, many of them appealing. There also were some great dancing scenes, no surprise there since Fred Astaire is one of the stars. Astaire and Vera-Ellen paired up well for those numbers.

This is one of the few films, even in the musicals, in which all the characters were nice people. In other words, there were no villains, no nasty people, which is refreshing to see now and then. It is supposedly the true-life account of songwriters Bert Kalmar (Astaire) and Harry Ruby (Red Skelton). Ruby is good at writing tunes, but not with lyrics. Kalmar supplies the lyrics and dance. Skelton also shows he had a decent singing voice.

The only unhappy moments in the movie are the squabbles between the two leading men, but that's not overdone and sometimes it's humorous. Skelton's character is the nicer of the two.

The leading ladies are wholesome-looking beautiful women. Vera-Ellen is a Shirley Jones-type pretty blonde with a great dancer's body. She's enjoyable to watch. Arlene Dahl, who was stunning, is the other leading female but her role was minor, unfortunately.

The movie is a good mixture of song, dance, comedy and drama and is an underrated film in that it that doesn't get a lot of publicity. Astaire was quoted as saying this was his favorite film. I agree. It's my favorite of his, too.


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