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Texas Carnival (1951)

Passed  -  Comedy | Music | Romance  -  5 October 1951 (USA)
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Ratings: 5.5/10 from 259 users  
Reviews: 8 user

A showmen team is mistaken for a cattle baron and his sister.



(screenplay), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: Texas Carnival (1951)

Texas Carnival (1951) on IMDb 5.5/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Debbie Telford
Cornie Quinell
Slim Shelby
Sunshine Jackson
Paula Raymond ...
Marilla Sabinas
Dan Sabinas
Tom Tully ...
Sheriff Jackson
Glenn Strange ...
Tex Hodgkins
Dick Wessel ...
Concessionaire #1
Donald MacBride ...
Concessionaire #2
Marjorie Wood ...
Mrs. Gaytes
Hotel Clerk
Thurston Hall ...
Mr. Gaytes
Duke Johnson ...
Wilson Wood ...


An guy and a girl who are working in a carnival's dunk tank. When inebriated Texan comes to the booth he and the guy starts drinking. Eventually the Texan invites him to a function. When they get there he's mistaken for the Texan and she for the man's sister. Eventually he lost a wager and doesn't know how he's going to pay it. And the girl finds herself attracted to the Texan's foreman. Written by

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

texan | sister | carnival | oil money | singing | See more »


M-G-M's High, Wide and Handsome TECHNICOLOR Musical! See more »


Comedy | Music | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

5 October 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Texas Carnival  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


At the time "Texas Carnival" was filmed, Red Norvo's trio included an African-American musician, bassist Charles Mingus, and when they recorded their number for this film (backing Ann Miller on "It's Dynamite") Mingus played on the soundtrack. But when the number was filmed MGM executives insisted that a white bassist substitute for Mingus on screen. See more »


During the chuck wagon race the Texas flag on the announcers stand is upside down. See more »


Featured in That's Entertainment! III (1994) See more »


I'm An Old Cowhand
Version Written by Johnny Mercer
Heard as a theme
See more »

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User Reviews

Low-budget Williams vehicle shows MGM was running out of ideas...
12 April 2007 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

How to get ESTHER WILLIAMS wet and still have an entertaining musical must have finally gotten to whomever dreamed up this lackluster, shoddy script for the MGM swimming star. She seldom dips a toe into the water and when she does her swimming scenes are brief.

In fact, the whole story is told in little more than one hour and seventeen minutes--and even then, it's exasperating to watch so little happen. The story is the tired old mistaken identity theme taken to ridiculous heights by RED SKELTON, who's mistaken for an obnoxious and wealthy oil baron (KEENAN WYNN) at a luxury hotel with a deluxe size swimming pool. HOWARD KEEL ambles into the story via horseback singing just one of several unmemorable songs and is soon ogling Esther poolside in a manner designed to get her to take a dip (for the sake of her fans).

ANN MILLER pops up to add some breezy Texas charm to the proceedings, but even her lively dance numbers lack the usual splash MGM gave to its production numbers. Esther is supposed to be a carnival girl who gets dumped into water by any man who can throw a curve ball--and she's hungry, or so we're told, to the point where she faints in the arms of Howard Keel who then chases her until she's caught. Esther has to be one of the healthiest gals ever supposed to be suffering from malnutrition that I've ever seen.

The hazy plot plods along until the predictable ending with the stolen identity cleared up and Esther is ready to melt into Keel's arms--none too soon.

Summing up: At least Esther had MILLION DOLLAR MERMAID in her future--but this is one where she's just killing time. Very unworthy vehicle for the swimming star par excellence.

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