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Right before the dancing Tobins ought to film a new production, his wife tells Freddy Tobin that she's pregnant. So the producer desperately has to seek a replacement and starts a countrywide competition among all college girls. However the contest is bogus: young dancer Patty Marlow is sent to a little college in the Midwest. Only Pug, a college reporter, suspects something.Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
In this B picture from MGM on the upward arc of her career, Lana Turner shows us
a few nice steps in a film that Ruby Keeler should have done over at Warner Brothers. Dancing Co-ed casts Lana as a vaudeville hoofer who has an act with
her father Leon Errol. Over at Warner Brothers Pat O'Brien would have played the part of the studio press agent who dreams up a co-ed dance contest with the
fix in for Turner. The winner gets to co-star with Lee Bowman in his next musical
picture. The press agent is played with frenetic intensity by Roscoe Karns.
Keeping an eye on Lana is Ann Rutherford and to complete the deception Rutherford handles the scholastic part of Lana being a college girl. The fly in
the ointment is Richard Carlson of the campus newspaper who suspects something ill is afoot. But Turner is sure appealing in those short tight dresses.
It wasn't the best of casting all around, but Turner shows the charm and appeal
that would make her box office for years. Her's and Rutherford's dancing was
adequate enough for the story. But if not Ruby Keeler, MGM certainly had
Eleanor Powell on the lot who hoofed it with the best of them.
One thing Turner did get out of Dancing Co-ed is a first husband in band leader Artie Shaw. Both Shaw and Turner had about 15 marriages between
them in their lives. Who could tell at that point.
Dancing Co-ed is one for Lana Turner fans and those who will become on after
seeing this film.
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