This musical reworking of TOO MANY HUSBANDS (1940), features Grable as a top singer and dancer who's been widowed by WW II. She marries her late husband's songwriting partner, Gower ... See full summary »
Temperamental saloon singer Freddie Jones, jealously shoots at her cheating boyfriend Blackie but mistakenly hits Judge Alfalfa J. O'Toole's honorable behind, forcing her to skip town under the guise of a schoolteacher.
Charming love story set on the Erie Canal in the mid-19th Century. A farmer works on the canal to earn money to buy a farm. He meets a cook on a canal boat, but she can't even consider ... See full summary »
Rich kid Danny Churchill (Rooney) has a taste for wine, women and song, but not for higher education. So his father ships him to an all-male college out West where there's not supposed to ... See full summary »
On a trip to France, millionaire Jervis Pendelton sees an 18 year old girl in an orphanage. Enchanted with her, but mindful of the difference in their ages, he sponsors her to college in ... See full summary »
In this chronicle of a vaudeville family, Myrtle McKinley (class of 1900) goes to San Francisco to attend business school, but ends up in a chorus line. Soon, star Frank Burt notices her ... See full summary »
Delilah Lee is the star of husband Jeff Ames' Broadway show when she starts to suspect he has been exchanging more than contracts with the show's vampish backer. Alimony and amnesia become the order of the day.
Erie Canal, N.Y., 1850: Molly Larkins, cook on Jotham Klore's canal boat, has a love-hate relationship with her boss. She hires handsome new haul-horse driver Dan Harrow and the inevitable triangle develops (complicated by Dan's desire to farm and Molly's to boat) against a background of the canalmen's fight against the encroaching railroad. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Don't forget, I'm a five time widow, and when they died they all left me everything they owned. Rest their souls.
What do you want with me? I'm broke.
Well, I figure after five rich husbands, the next one would be on the house.
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It's sad that The Farmer Takes A Wife was owned by 20th Century Fox instead of Warner Brothers. Had Jack Warner been in charge he had the right person for the female lead in Doris Day. As it is this musical adaption of the Frank Elsner-Marc Connelly play has a most miscast Betty Grable doing a part that had Doris stamped all over it. When Betty says 'Uticky' it doesn't quite come out right.
The original play ran for 104 performances in the 1934-35 season and was the vehicle that made Henry Fonda a star. In fact producer Walter Wanger took the highly unusual step in bringing Fonda to Hollywood to star in the role that made him. Playing the parts that Betty Grable and John Carroll have in this version are Janet Gaynor and Charles Bickford.
Of course with this being changed to a musical and the billing reflecting it, the emphasis was changed from the male to the female lead. Seeing Dale Robertson as Dan Harrow though, he makes an admirable substitute for Fonda.
Too bad that Harold Arlen and Dorothy Fields didn't write anything memorable in the score. And for the life of me I can't figure why John Carroll who does sing well, wasn't given more to do musically.
The story is an old fashioned rustic one set during the final days of the Erie Canal. Everyone but Betty seems to realize the railroad will eventually put the canal out of business as the major venue of transportation. Still she and soft spoken farmer Robertson do eventually come together as Robertson wins her over Carroll who is a real lout in this film. I can readily see Charles Bickford in that part in the first film version.
At the same time Betty was doing this, Doris Day was doing Calamity Jane over at Warner Brothers in a similar role with much better songs. Maybe with a better score, The Farmer Takes A Wife would have been more memorable.
Still I think it would have needed Doris Day.
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