7.0/10
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27 user 17 critic

A Song Is Born (1948)

With her gangster boyfriend under investigation by the police, a nightclub singer hides out in a musical research institution staffed by bachelor professors - one of whom begins to fall for her.

Director:

Howard Hawks

Writers:

Billy Wilder (based on the story "From A to Z" by), Thomas Monroe (based on the story "From A to Z" by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Danny Kaye ... Professor Hobart Frisbee
Virginia Mayo ... Honey Swanson
Benny Goodman ... Professor Magenbruch
Tommy Dorsey ... Tommy Dorsey
Louis Armstrong ... Louis Armstrong
Lionel Hampton ... Lionel Hampton
Charlie Barnet ... Charlie Barnet
Mel Powell ... Mel Powell
Ford Washington Lee Ford Washington Lee ... Buck
John William Sublett John William Sublett ... Bubbles
Page Cavanaugh Trio ... The Page Cavanaugh Trio (as The Page Cavanaugh Trio)
The Golden Gate Quartette ... The Golden Gate Quartette (as The Golden Gate Quartet)
Samba Kings Samba Kings ... The Samba Kings (as Russo and The Samba Kings)
Hugh Herbert ... Professor Twingle
Steve Cochran ... Tony Crow
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Storyline

Gangster's moll Honey Swanson goes into hiding when her boyfriend is under investigation by the police. Where better to hide than a musical research institute staffed entirely by lonely bachelors? She gets more than she bargained for when the head of the institute Professor Hobart Frisbee starts to fall for her. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Danny's latest is his greatest! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 October 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

That's Life See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,400,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The music from "The Mocking Bird"/"A Song Is Born" is part of "The New World Symphony" by Antonín Dvorák. It is frequently played and sung under the title "Goin' Home". See more »

Goofs

At one point, during the last musical session when the two gangsters are holding everyone captive, the wires making the drum jump up and down can be seen. See more »

Quotes

Honey Swanson: [about Frisbee] Yes, I love him. I love those hick shirts he wears with the boiled collars and the way he always has his coat buttoned wrong. It looks like a giraffe, and I love him. I love him because he's the sort of a guy that gets drunk on a glass of buttermilk. And I love the way he blushes right up over his ears. I love him because he... he doesn't know how to kiss, the jerk.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Superman II: Restoring the Vision (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Joshua Fit de Battle of Jericho
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung by The Golden Gate Quartette
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The movie is entertaining, but the music is incredible ...
6 June 2006 | by bryce-40See all my reviews

Where else can you see a jam session with Louie Armstrong on trumpet, Charlie Barnet on saxophone, Benny Goodman on clarinet, and Tommy Dorsey on trombone? Four major swing band leaders jamming out, and they do it more than once on this film. The movie is sufficiently entertaining to watch, but the real treat is the music jam sessions. Some of you may not know Charlie Barnet. Barnet was from a wealthy family, and his bands were more freewheeling than most traditional swing bands. He was the first white band leader to integrate his bands, and he gave Lena Horne her first gig with a major orchestra.

The true big band aficionado will recognize some of the other musicians, but I will not list them here as I might spoil someone's fun.


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