7.6/10
12,290
100 user 65 critic

Swing Time (1936)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 12 October 1936 (Brazil)
Trailer
2:36 | Trailer
Roguish gambler/dancer "Lucky" Garnett is challenged by his fiance's father to come up with $25,000 to prove he's worthy of her hand. But after he falls in love with a dance instructor, Lucky'll do anything to keep from earning the bucks.

Director:

George Stevens

Writers:

Howard Lindsay (screen play), Allan Scott (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Fred Astaire ... Lucky Garnett
Ginger Rogers ... Penny Carroll
Victor Moore ... Pop Cardetti
Helen Broderick ... Mabel Anderson
Eric Blore ... Gordon
Betty Furness ... Margaret Watson
Georges Metaxa Georges Metaxa ... Ricky Romero
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Storyline

Lucky is tricked into missing his wedding to Margaret by the other members of Pop's magic and dance act, and has to make $25000 to be allowed to marry her. He and Pop go to New York where they run into Penny, a dancing instructor. She and Lucky form a successful dance partnership, but romance is blighted (till the end of the film at least!) by his old attachment to Margaret and hers for Ricardo, the band leader who won't play for them to dance together. Written by Sebastian Gibbs <sjg94@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The giddy world is glad again! We're off in a burst of rhythm! Set your clocks two leaps ahead! The new time is "Swing Time"! (Print Ad-Coquille Valley Sentinel, ((Coquille, Ore.)) 9 October 1936) See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Stevens' perfectionism meant that multiple takes were common, even for non-dancing scenes. See more »

Goofs

During the shadow dance, the shadow behind Lucky is visible through him. See more »

Quotes

Mabel Anderson: I used to go there in the summer as a kid. You know, before the war.
Everett 'Pop' Cardetti: Which war?
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Connections

Referenced in The Muppet Show: Nancy Walker (1977) See more »

Soundtracks

Waltz in Swing Time
(1936) (uncredited)
Lyrics by Dorothy Fields
Music by Jerome Kern
Constructed and Arranged by Robert Russell Bennett
Sung offscreen by an unidentified Chorus during the opening credits
Later danced by Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers
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User Reviews

Swing Time is a sweet time!
1 April 2002 | by gapeach17See all my reviews

I completely agree with my fellow film buffs that "Swing Time" ties with "Top Hat" as Fred and Ginger's best musical together. While "Top Hat" has an elegant, almost dreamy atmosphere to it, "Swing Time" gets a gold star for its more real (albeit musical numbers) and honest feel. Fred and Ginger just shine as dapper Lucky and sassy but classy Penny. One of their best dance numbers together is the spontaneous and fun "Pick Yourself Up", where Fred is in overly formal attire and Ginger wears a cute black business dress. Fred's big moment in the sun, however, is the legendary "Bojangles of Harlem" number. Many people today object to it because Fred dances in black face, but I feel it's totally misunderstood. Instead of the awful, grotesque black face Al Jolson wore (pitch black face with white lips), Fred wears tasteful theatrical makeup (think Laurence Olivier as Othello). Also, Fred isn't doing a jig in a cotton field and eating watermelon; the backdrop is a city with glamorous backup dancers. It's not a racist parody, it's one great dancer's tribute to another (that's who Bojangles was, after all). Forget what's on Fred's face, just watch him display a talent no one sees anymore. Because that's what it is: talent and tribute, not hate.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

12 October 1936 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

I Won't Dance See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$886,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,379
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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