Following three flops in a row, Broadway stage producer Willard Samson is told by wealthy divorcée Donna Davis that she will finance a show but only if she is the star. The fact she can ...
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Following three flops in a row, Broadway stage producer Willard Samson is told by wealthy divorcée Donna Davis that she will finance a show but only if she is the star. The fact she can neither sing, act nor dance does not deter Samson. His press agent, Ken Douglas, lives in a theatrical boarding house run by his friend from vaudeville, Larry Martin, where he meets Jeanie Maxwell, singing teacher and aspiring songwriter from, of course, Altoona, Pa., who has come to New York to sell her songs. Samson is not interested in her songs as much as he is her stage abilities, but he can't get rid of Donna. Ken is also plugging for Samson to use the vaudeville acts, living at the boarding house, who can't get work because there is no more vaudeville, despite the fact that some of the acts are examples of what killed vaudeville in the first place. The show appears to have potential, with the exception of Donna, when Ken convinces her she is the perfect "outdoorable girl" for a publicity ...Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
As other commentators have noted, this is not a prime not-to-miss musical. Don Ameche and Jack Oakie make the best of trite material, but I think the real star of the show is Janet Blair. Just skip the first 50 minutes of the movie to get to the musical numbers. There is a weird Asian number where the chorus girls wear head coverings that look like Chinese coolie hats. Then Janet Blair comes on to shimmy and shake with serpentine dexterity. Later on in the movie, she sings Cole Porter's "You'd Be So Nice to Come Home To" with Ameche joining in. It's not a big production number, just tossing off and downplaying one of Porter's better songs. As a matter of taste, the production numbers are small scale, compared to the lavish dances in the early Astaire/Rogers films of the 30's. Did I count only 20 or so chorus members? The camera begins by taking a long view of the stage, and it tightens up to focus on mid-level action with few if any close ups. No Busby Berkeley shots. Nonetheless, Blair is charming, fetching, and very attractive. She went on to a middling career on TV in the 50's/60's, but she never became a big star like some ladies who worked for MGM. Too bad since she was a good performer who deserved more recognition.
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