Don Martin is a star hockey player with the Wildcats until he is barred from Hockey for hitting a referee. Through the actions of Chris, Don is able to get a job with Buzz Fletcher's ...
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Don Martin is a star hockey player with the Wildcats until he is barred from Hockey for hitting a referee. Through the actions of Chris, Don is able to get a job with Buzz Fletcher's ice-show as the novelty act. Chris trains with Don and he is a success, and they marry. But Gale is also interested in Don and when Don has a chance to leave and join Jack's premiere show, Gale takes him drinking. As an alcoholic, he is in no shape to skate for Jack; so Buzz has Chris do a routine. Her act is great and Jack wants her, without Don, for his ice skating show. Don leaves her to allow her to go on to stardom.Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When her contract with 20th Century Fox was finished Sonja Henie went to the newly formed International Pictures for It's A Pleasure. The new company which would shortly merge with Universal Studios was the brain child of J. Arthur Rank and It's A Pleasure was given the same kind of lavish production that characterized Sonja's work with Darryl F. Zanuck at Fox.
Her leading man was Michael O'Shea and I will say this, he never embarrassed himself on the ice as James Stewart, Joan Crawford, and Lew Ayres did in Ice Follies of 1939. In fact while we do have some film of him as a hockey player, there is no footage of him or even a double working in the ice show later on and I suspect for good reason.
Which brings me to the plot, Sonja is a member of an ice show troupe that entertains at half times during hockey matches. O'Shea is a hard drinking, quick tempered hockey player who lights Sonja's fire and a few others as well. When he slugs a referee during a hockey brawl, he's banned from what I presume was the National Hockey League permanently.
But Sonja sells the idea to promoter Bill Johnson to use O'Shea as an attraction for the ice show. I really have to wonder whether someone like Gordie Howe or Andy Bathgate would ever have lent themselves to something like this. A good skater in hockey does not a figure skater make which underlies the essential silliness of the plot.
Johnson's wife Marie McDonald is also interested in O'Shea for her own reasons and therein lies the personal story.
Of course the whole thing is just an excuse to film some of Sonja Henie's elaborate routines on ice. As for Sonja, she was not a great actress by any stretch, but she did project a certain wholesomeness on screen which was the secret of her appeal. I would have to say that she was the greatest female athlete that made the best success transitioning to show business in history.
Although his role as the wronged husband is not really substantial and in fact he's something of a fool here, It's A Pleasure offers moviegoers one of the few filmed performances of Broadway star Bill Johnson. He had a far more substantial stage career and in fact reached his biggest success as a Tony Award nominee for the Rodgers&Hammerstein musical Pipe Dream which was his last role. He died way too young shortly after that musical closed on Broadway. Too bad he wasn't given a song here.
It's A Pleasure is also noted as the film debut of David Janssen who was all of 15 when he made his appearance as the referee of a boys hockey match. Those ears make him recognizable.
It's A Pleasure is an average film that will appeal primarily to figure skating and Sonja Henie fans.
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