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Carousel (1956)

Approved | | Drama, Fantasy, Musical | 16 February 1956 (USA)
Fifteen years after his death, a carousel barker is granted permission to return to Earth for one day to make amends to his widow and their daughter.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
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Barbara Ruick ...
Claramae Turner ...
Robert Rounseville ...
...
...
...
William LeMassena ...
Heavenly Friend (as William Le Massena)
...
Jacques d'Amboise ...
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Storyline

Billy Bigelow has been dead for fifteen years, and now outside the pearly gates, he long waived his right to go back to Earth for a day. But he has heard that there is a problem with his family, namely his wife Julie Bigelow née Jordan and the child he never met, that problem with which he would now like to head back to Earth to assist in rectifying. Before he is allowed back to Earth, he has to get the OK from the gatekeeper, to who he tells his story... Immediately attracted to each other, he and Julie met when he worked as a carousel barker. Both stated to the other that they did not believe in love or marriage, but they did get married. Because the shrewish carousel owner, Mrs. Mullin, was attracted to Billy herself, and since she believed he was only of use as a barker if he was single to attract the young women to the carousel, she fired him. With no other job skills and unwilling to take just any job, Billy did not provide for Julie but rather lived off Julie's Aunt Nettie. But... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

More than your eyes have ever seen! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy | Musical

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 February 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm magnetic prints)| (premiere only)| (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(CinemaScope 55)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The song 'You'll Never Walk Alone' written for this film by Rodgers and Hammerstein has had many cover versions produced. The most famous of these was by a Gerry and the Pacemakers who were a Liverpudlian band (also where the Beatles came from) fronted by Gerry Marsden. This song is sung before every Liverpool Football Club home match and has become one of the most famous songs in football. See more »

Goofs

As Jigger (Cameron Mitchell) first talks to Billy (Gordon MacRae) about a robbery, the sound of an outboard motor can faintly be heard in the harbor. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Heavenly Friend: Bigelow...
Billy Bigelow: [impatiently] Well, what'd I do now?
Heavenly Friend: Nothing. I just thought you'd wanna know - there's trouble.
Billy Bigelow: Huh! Thought you said I didn't do nothin'.
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Crazy Credits

A star hurtles downward and explodes in mid-air; out of this appears the credit "Twentieth-Century Fox presents Rodgers and Hammerstein's 'Carousel'". The other credits all appear in a straightforward fashion. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Atomic Brain (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

The Carousel Waltz
(1945) (uncredited)
Music by Richard Rodgers
Performed by 20th Century-Fox Studio Orchestra
Conducted by Alfred Newman
Played over the opening credits and during the scene on the carousel
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

excellent Rodgers and Hammerstein musical
15 November 2003 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

This is the musical which gave Gordon MacRae his greatest solo song, namely the 7 minutes long "Soliloquy", in which Billy the circus barker speculates about his unborn child, first with bluster and pride if it is a boy, and then with insecurity and despair if it is a girl he can't buy things for. Billy, as we have seen in the opening sequence of the film, is telling his story to one of the angels in heaven, where he has gone after a violent and premature death. So we see his tale unfold, as he meets pretty little Julie Jordan (Shirley Jones, excellent), marries her, and through fate and bad luck, gets separated from her.

The subject matter is darker than Oklahoma (the film version of which also starred MacRae and Jones) but the sheer exuberance of songs such as "June is Bustin' Out All Over"; "A Real Nice Clambake"; "When The Children Are Asleep" and "If I Loved You", plus of course the best-known song from the show, "You'll Never Walk Alone" takes the story to another level and makes this film enjoyable to watch. Robert Rounsville makes a fine bombastic Mr Snow and has a fabulous voice; MacRae and Jones have their memorable duet to the lovely melody of Rodgers' score. There is also an excellent dance sequence, not as extensive as on stage, but still effective, where the daughter of Billy and Julie imagines an escape from her lonely and ostracised life.


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