Don Hewes and Nadine Hale are a dancing team, but she decides to start a career on her own. So he takes the next dancer he meets, Hannah Brown, as a new partner. After a while, this new team is so successful that Florenz Ziegfeld is interested in them, but due to the fact that Nadine Hale also dances (and stars) in the Ziegfeld Follies, Don says no. Despite the fact that he is in love with Hannah, he keeps the relation with her strictly business. So Hannah is of the opinion that he is still in love with Nadine, and her suspicion grows when he dances with Nadine in a Night Club Floor Show.Written by
Stephan Eichenberg <email@example.com>
While Hannah sings "It Only Happens When I Dance With You", she's supposed to be accompanying herself on the piano, but her hands never reach the low notes that are heard. See more »
[as he enters the apartment]
Essie, Nadine's Maid:
Oh, Mr. Hewes.
Hello darling! Where are you?
Oh Don, I've been trying to call you.
Uh, Essie, will you help me with these things please?
[laughs while struggling with several stacked boxes]
Thank you. Well, I got all tied up with an Easter rabbit. Hello sweetheart.
[...] See more »
Judy Garland sings "Mr. Monotony" in a sequence cut from the film. An excerpt from the number was included in That's Entertainment! III. The 2004 DVD box set release of all three That's Entertainment films contains a bonus DVD that includes the complete performance of this number. See more »
By far the best bit of this movie is early on in the running time, when the wonderful Fred Astaire has a routine in a toy shop, to the Berlin number Drum Crazy'. He's there to get an Easter present for his dancing partner (played with energy by Ann Miller), but she has a bombshell to drop: she's leaving him to join a bigger name stage show, and he's left high and dry without an act.
Step forward Judy Garland, as a waitress who Fred thinks might be able to sing and dance. At first she's reluctant, and hopeless, but of course, this being MGM mush she falls for Fred and suddenly finds her talent. At this sort of thing Garland had no peer.
Also in the cast are Peter Lawford, as a rich no-hoper with a heart who first pursues Garland, and then steps aside for Fred (heading for Miller on the rebound). He sings A Fella With An Umbrella not very well but is certainly easier on the eye than Astaire. A tiny but scene-stealing role is given to Jules Munshin, who would be seen the following year in On The Town', as a waiter describing just how the green onion salad listed on the menu is prepared.
The lead was not originally planned for Fred, but for the younger and more athletic dancer Gene Kelly, but when Kelly injured his leg the way was clear for Astaire to be coaxed out of retirement. He continued to appear in musicals for another twenty years.
The songs in Easter Parade' are a bit of a rag-bag classics such as Easter Parade, Steppin' Out With My Baby, Shakin' The Blues Away etc. jostle with old vaudeville numbers like When The Midnight Choo-Choo Leaves For Alabam'. The result is a bit of a mish-mash. Perhaps the best song shot for the movie was the one omitted before release Mr Monotony, performed by Garland in her trademark costume of the top half of a tux and tights (two years before Summer Stock' and the Get Happy number). This number can be seen in That's Entertainment III, released in 1994.
Easter Parade' is good, but unbelievable. I never could understand the appeal of Fred Astaire beyond his dancing, and the supposition that a character of Garland's age would be interested in him is stretching things a bit. That aside, it has excellent Technicolor and moves along at a steady pace.
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