Esqueda, an outlaw, attempts to force settlers King and Cordelia Cameron out of his territory. Esqueda's mother raised Rio as her own. Rio has loyalty to Esqueda but also feels the settlers... See full summary »
Noted writer Kenneth Bixby, in love with his witty secretary Anne Rogers, nevertheless agrees to a tete-a-tete with a former college fling, loopy Danish girl Julie who is married to ... See full summary »
Two smart marketing people resurrect some old films starring cowboy Smoky Callaway and put them on television. The films are a big hit and the star is in demand. Unfortunately no one can ... See full summary »
Mexican gunfighter Dave Robles outdraws the town's outlaw-turned-sheriff and is invited to fill the dead man's shoes. But a tin star doesn't bring automatic respectability and Robles is ... See full summary »
New Yorkers Bill and Connie Fuller have to move from their apartment. Without Bill's knowledge, Connie purchases a delapidated old farmhouse in Pennsylvania, where George Washington was ... See full summary »
Andy wants to buy a new car so he goes into the judge's home office where his father is about to write a $200 check to charity. He asks his dad for the $200 and they go used car shopping. ... See full summary »
The scene at the beginning of the movie shows Andy reminiscing about giving Betsy Booth his music pin. This is actually a scene from the movie Babes in Arms. Mickey Rooney needed to dub Betsy's name and it's obvious his lips don't match what he says. See more »
Near the end of the movie, when the family gathers outside to meet the townspeople, Chuck comes out of the front door twice. See more »
The movie was an obvious attempt by MGM to capitalize on the huge success of the Andy Hardy series. The studio, suffering like so many others from the zooming popularity of television, was hoping to make more than one of the "new" Andy Hardy movies. Unfortunately, this film got a mediocre reception from both critics and theater-goers alike, and MGM abandoned the idea of continuing the series. In Rooney's own words: "The public just didn't care what happened to Andy Hardy."
The film brought back the four living cast members of the Hardy family(Lewis Stone having passed away in 1953): Rooney, Cecilia Parker, Fay Holden, and Sara Haden. Beyond those four, the cast is brand new. Mickey's movie-wife is somebody named Jane who is unknown to Hardy movie fans. Old standbys such as Ann Rutherford (who refused to appear), Esther Williams, Judy Garland, and Lana Turner are absent, except in flashbacks. Sadly, Lewis Stone, the second most important character in the original series, wasn't even given a flashback; he's only seen briefly in portraits and photos.
The movie itself is a disappointment, at least to me. It simply isn't faithful to the original series. The Hardy house is nothing like it had been in the original movies. The simple, wholesome Carvel that enchanted moviegoers of the late 1930's and early 1940's is gone, replaced by a more modern (for the late 1950's) theme and it's out of place. There are only a few flashbacks; they are too short and are seemingly randomly placed without rhyme or reason. The lighting is much brighter and upbeat than it was in the original series, and the effect destroys the old image. Generic sophistication takes the place of charming simplicity. There's way too much music in the movie; even the flashbacks have music dubbed over them. There are several scenes involving teens of that era doing such things as rock-and-rolling. Apparently, MGM wanted to appeal to both fans of the old movies and the modern audience (such as teens). If box office receipts and critical reviews are any indication, the middle- of-the-road approach managed to please neither group. This movie is about as similar to the original Hardy movies as the late Maury Chaykin's portrayal of Nero Wolfe is to his playing of Jim in "War Games". The recreation by Andy and his son of a "man to man talk", an attempt to match the same by Andy and Judge Stone, falls flat on its face.
Separately, there's the ridiculous ending of the whole town changing theirminds due to Andy's speech, Andy being offered---and accepting after a few minutes of thought---his late father's position as judge, and the new family portrait (a parody of the old one), along with the "To Be Continued" subtitle.
Of note, this movie was the screen debut for the sons of two famous stars: Teddy Rooney (Mickey's son), and Johnny Weissmuller Jr. It's also the first appearance by Gina Gillespie, whose older sister Darlene was one of the original Mousketeers. None of the three had much of a career in acting, and their careers certainly didn't get a springboard from this movie.
I'm a big fan of the Hardy series, and when TCM had their recent Hardy marathon, I recorded and watched them all, including this one, but "Andy Hardy Comes Home" is in a different world than the other Hardy movies.
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