6.4/10
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41 user 17 critic

Words and Music (1948)

Fictionalized story of the songwriting partnership of Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart.

Director:

Norman Taurog

Writers:

Guy Bolton (story), Ben Feiner Jr. (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
June Allyson ... June Allyson
Perry Como ... Eddie Lorrison Anders
Judy Garland ... Judy Garland
Lena Horne ... Lena Horne
Gene Kelly ... Gene Kelly
Mickey Rooney ... Lorenz 'Larry' Hart
Ann Sothern ... Joyce Harmon
Tom Drake ... Richard 'Dick' Rodgers
Cyd Charisse ... Margo Grant
Betty Garrett ... Peggy Lorgan McNeil
Janet Leigh ... Dorothy Feiner
Marshall Thompson ... Herbert Fields
Mel Tormé ... Mel Tormé (as Mel Torme)
Vera-Ellen ... Vera-Ellen
Jeanette Nolan ... Mrs. Hart
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Storyline

Encomium to Larry Hart (1895-1943), seen through the fictive eyes of his song-writing partner, Richard Rodgers (1902-1979): from their first meeting, through lean years and their breakthrough, to their successes on Broadway, London, and Hollywood. We see the fruits of Hart and Rodgers' collaboration - elaborately staged numbers from their plays, characters' visits to night clubs, and impromptu performances at parties. We also see Larry's scattered approach to life, his failed love with Peggy McNeil, his unhappiness, and Richard's successful wooing of Dorothy Feiner. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

22 Terrific Rodgers and Hart Tunes! 2 Exciting Love Stories! 5 Great Broadway Musicals Rolled Into One! 14 Spectacular Girl-Filled Production Scenes! 14 Sensational Singing and Dancing Stars! and Color by Technicolor See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 December 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ena tragoudi, mia zoi See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,799,970 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Four Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart songs from the 1937 Broadway production of "Babes in Arms" which were showcased in this film hadn't been used in the 1939 Rooney-Garland-Busby Berkeley backyard musical. The numbers are: "I Wish I Were in Love Again," a duet by old pals Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland in the party sequence; "Johnny One Note," Miss Garland's spirited follow-up at the party; Lena Horne's exuberant "The Lady Is a Tramp," which became a signature song for her; and finally, "Way Out West (On West End Avenue)," a comic ditty sung partially by 'Betty Garrett (I)', whose full prerecording can be found on the soundtrack CD from Sony. See more »

Goofs

During the "Mountain Greenery" song a dancer drops a platter which breaks and scatters food all over the stage. A few seconds later the platter and the food are gone. See more »

Quotes

Judy Garland: [singing] The sleepless nights, the daily fights, The quick toboggan when you reach the heights, I miss the kisses and I miss the bites, I wish I were in love again.
Lorenz 'Larry' Hart: The broken dates, the endless waits, The lovely loving and the hateful hates, The conversation with the flying plates, I wish I were in love again...
See more »

Connections

Spoofed in It's a Great Feeling (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Moon
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics by Lorenz Hart
(Blue Moon was a popular song published in 1934. It did not appear in any Rogers & Hart shows!)
Sung by Mel Tormé
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Notable only for its many musical numbers.
17 February 2003 | by hrd1963See all my reviews

A sanitized account of the personal lives and professional partnership of Richard Rogers and Lorenz Hart. Tom Drake is his usual bland self as Rogers and Mickey Rooney is characteristically over-the-top as the self-destructive, troubled Hart. (According to the film, Hart's problems stemmed from a failed romance with a singer, played here by Betty Garrett. In truth, Hart was gay but this was only part of what contributed to his complicated personality.) The film is notable only for its many musical numbers. Among the highlights: Lena Horne's masterful rendition of "Where or When" and "The Lady is a Tramp"; June Allyson and the Blackburn Twins' charming "Thou Swell"; and Judy Garland and Rooney's spirited "I Wish I Were In Love Again" as well as Garland's dynamic "Johnny One Note". The show-stopper, however, is the brilliant jazz ballet, "Slaughter On Tenth Avenue", choreographed by Gene Kelly and danced expertly by Kelly and the fabulous Vera-Ellen. It, alone, is worth the price of admission.


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