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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

The film's storyline of a G.I.'s romance with a Canteen girl named Irene was inspired by the song, "I Left My Heart at the Stage Door Canteen", written by Irving Berlin, and recorded in 1942 by singer Kenny Baker (who appears in this film). The opening lyrics of the song are, "I left my heart at the Stage Door Canteen / I left it there with a girl named Irene." See more »

Quotes

Eileen Burke: Say, how do you look out of uniform?
Dakota Smith: Pretty naked!
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

Featured in Inside the Marx Brothers (2003) 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

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User Reviews

mixed bag of period performance and quick cameos
21 July 2004 | by didi-5See all my reviews

In wartime, a group of soldiers stop off at a canteen before they are posted to heaven knows where. In this canteen they are entertained and served by luminaries from stage and screen (so much fun for the viewer spotting big names in little roles). The soldiers (California, Dakota, and Tex) are the lynchpins who carry the paper-thin story around delightful performances from the likes of Ethel Merman, Ray Bolger, Gracie Fields, Benny Goodman with Peggy Lee, Kay Kyser, Xavier Cugat, and Count Basie.

Blink and you might miss (a few names for a taster) Tallulah Bankhead, Ina Claire, Judith Anderson, Aline MacMahon, Katherine Cornell, the Lunts, George Jessel, Ed Wynn, Ralph Bellamy, George Raft, May Whitty, Harpo Marx, Ned Sparks, and Dorothy Fields. You'll remember Katharine Hepburn as she goes all patriotic at the end of the movie.

Is it a good film? Probably not, but it is certainly historically interesting and probably has the most big names in one movie. The three soldier boys stand for all their compatriots who went to war'during both that conflict and the ones which followed. They aren't glorified, but are simply depicted as young lads who like dancing with girls and being treated with courtesy. We may never know what happens to California, Dakota, and Tex (and millions like them) but 'Stage Door Canteen' gives you a bit of their lives, and a snapshot of the wartime canteen.


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