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Stage Door Canteen (1943)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 22 November 1943 (UK)
"Dakota," a young soldier on a pass in New York City, visits the famed Stage Door Canteen, where famous stars of the theatre and films appear and host a recreational center for servicemen ... See full summary »

Director:

Frank Borzage

Writer:

Delmer Daves (original screenplay)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Judith Anderson ... Judith Anderson
Kenny Baker ... Kenny Baker
Tallulah Bankhead ... Tallulah Bankhead
Ralph Bellamy ... Ralph Bellamy
Edgar Bergen ... Edgar Berger
Charlie McCarthy ... Charlie McCarthy
Ray Bolger ... Ray Bolger
Ina Claire ... Ina Claire
Katharine Cornell Katharine Cornell ... Katherine Cornell
Gracie Fields ... Gracie Fields
Lynn Fontanne ... Lynn Fontaine
Helen Hayes ... Helen Hayes
Katharine Hepburn ... Katharine Hepburn
Hugh Herbert ... Hugh Herbert
Jean Hersholt ... Jean Hersholt
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Storyline

"Dakota," a young soldier on a pass in New York City, visits the famed Stage Door Canteen, where famous stars of the theatre and films appear and host a recreational center for servicemen during the war. Dakota meets a pretty young hostess, Eileen, and they enjoy the many entertainers and a growing romance. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Musical | Romance | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Russian | Spanish

Release Date:

22 November 1943 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Chuva de Estrelas See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Sol Lesser Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Katharine Hepburn's only musical film. See more »

Quotes

Dakota Smith: As they say in Madison Square Gardens, this is a return engagement.
Judith Anderson: I'll bet 2 to 1 on the soldier. Knockout in the second round.
See more »

Crazy Credits

All rights granted by the American Theater Wing which gratefully acknowledges and credits the producers, stars and members of all the theatrical unions, guilds, crafts and associations for their participation in the creation and continuance of the original Stage Door Canteen. See more »

Alternate Versions

Many prints run at 93 minutes, cutting out many performances. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in Stage Door Cartoon (1944) See more »

Soundtracks

Ave Maria, Op.52 No.6
(1825) (uncredited)
Music by Franz Schubert
Played by Yehudi Menuhin on violin with piano accompaniment
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A once in a lifetime movie
24 March 2004 | by sol-kaySee all my reviews

"Stage Door Canteen" is one film that you can unashamedly call a once in a lifetime movie without feeling a bit embarrassed by saying it. Simple and modest as well as grand and uplifting this movie probably did more to boost Americas morale during WWII then all the Blood & Guts war movies made during that war put together and did it without a single shot being fired and without anyone on "Theirs" side as well as "Ours" getting killed or wounded in the movie.

The fact that the film "Stage Door Canteen" can be seen today or anytime in the future without being taken back for a second by the off-the-wall, and even hysterical, war propaganda that was in almost all the films made during WWII by Hollywood shows just how good and unique this movie really is.

The movie is about a group of American Servicemen on their way to the European Theater of war and how they spend their last week in New York City before their sent into arms way via the dangerous North Atlantic convoys as well as to the bloody battlefields of North Africa and Europe. Getting to see not just how the man in the street but a galaxy of movie stars, that are just too many to mention in this review, appreciated their efforts in going "Over There" to fight the good fight where they may very well end up at the bottom of the cold U-Boat infested North Atlantic Ocean.

Beautifully filmed in black and white with a number of wonderful songs by the top recording artists of that time with the star-struck GI's Sailors and Marines dancing with beautiful girls and movie stars that they could only dream about about or see on the silver screen and motion picture magazines.

Watching the movie puts you right inside those servicemen heads and how they felt just before they were to face the horrors of war and how the American public felt an cared for them and how they went out of their way to show it. "Stage Door Canteen" didn't try to glorify the fighting in the war, even though it was made during the darkest days of WWII. The movie showed us those who were to fight the war as human beings who only wanted to do what was necessary to win the war so they could come back to their family and friends and the America that they left behind.

Like I said before "Stage Door Canteen" is a once in a lifetime movie that during those most bleakest and uncertain days of the Second World War shines like a beam of light through those dark clouds and gave hope to all those on the battlefield as well as those on the home front.

One of the most moving scenes in the movie was when a home sick GI asked Helen Hayes the first Lady of the Theater who played Queen Victoria on the stage to dance with him. Helen somewhat surprised asks the GI why he would want to dance with her since there are so many young and beautiful movie stars, much more beautiful then her, for him to choose from? The GI tells her, awestruck, that in the future, if he were to survive the war, he wants to tell his grandchildren that he once danced with Queen Victoria.


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