The I Don't Care Girl (1953) Poster

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Entertaining curio
Chris Clazie4 April 2002
This movie has been shown recently in England,so liking musicals,I decided to watch it.Curious mixture of voice overs,flashbacks and a film within a film,all packed tightly into less than 90 minutes.Mitzi Gaynor is astounding.The film works because of her.Although the period setting is earlier in the 20th Century,the dazzling production numbers are pure 50's.Paintbox bright colours are prevailant.Mitzi's costumes are spectacular.One wishes it was longer and more detailed,but it's an extremely agreeable way to spend 80 odd minutes.An entertaining curio.
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Despite it all Mitzi Dazzles
robb marsh3 June 2007
It's a great pity but "The I Don't Care Girl" was indeed severely cut. Scenes and numbers were shuffled, scenes and numbers ended up on the cutting-room floor, scenes were re-filmed, Jack Cole was brought in (and even his 'I Don't Care' and 'Beale Street Blues' traded places so that the one designed to end the film, didn't, and the other one, with its scene to follow, did), until what was released (in 1953, rather than 1952) was the hodge-podge you see today. Yet despite all of the butchery the multi-talented Mitzi sets the screen on fire whenever she appears, whether it's in a dramatic scene or dazzling her way through those Cole-choreographed production numbers. Sadly we'll never see the complete version, or those cut numbers. Drat!
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dance sequence - Johnson Rag
Williams26 September 2002
Not the greatest of musicals I've ever seen, but I was fascinated by the combination of Mozart & The Johnson Rag. The intricate dancing was dazzling & I replayed this sequence several times. Turns out that the Italian lyrics were not the original ones but the combination of Mozart & jazz dance steps I thought were brilliant. One of the most intriguing dance routines I've seen. Being 20th C Fox & not MGM, this has never been given the credit it deserves. Oscar Levant, as always, was a bonus.
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Disappointing "biopic" that isn't
vincentlynch-moonoi23 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
It doesn't appear that this film is anymore a true biopic of performer Eva Tanguay than most biopics from the 1930s through 1950s were. But, despite having only a smattering of accuracy in it, some of Mitzi Gaynor's dance routines are fantastic.

I had never even heard of Eva Tanguay, although I was vaguely familiar with the old song "I Don't Care". It's interesting to read her bio on Wikipedia...preferably before you watch the film; in fact, the bio may be more entertaining than the film.

While far from her best film, Mitzi Gaynor shines here, although I doubt production numbers at the turn of the century were this lavish.

Oscar Levant is here as a fellow performer. He seems more ill-at-ease here than usually; this just wasn't the right kind of part for him.

David Wayne is surprisingly good as a song and dance man who, at one time, teamed with Tanguay. Bob Graham is a singer with his eye on Tanguay...but my reaction was Bob who? It's interesting to see George Jessel, as Himself, as the producer of the very film you're watching.

A rather disappointing outing.
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An I-don't-care movie
marcslope23 January 2007
It begins, even before the credits, with an onstage production number in which Mitzi, as famed vaudevillian Eva Tanguay, emerges hoarse and uncertain onstage, thus forcing the stage manager to ring down the curtain. AND IT NEVER COMES BACK TO THIS. That's how ineptly cut this Fox backstager is, leaving a major plot thread unacknowledged for the next 78 minutes. Along the way we get some clichéd show-must-go-on situations, the unappealing Oscar Levant (especially unappealing when deprived of good dialog, which Comden and Green provided him the same year in "The Band Wagon") plunking away on some classical piano, David Wayne in what first appears to be the leading-man role but turns into an inconsequential supporting part, the pleasant-voiced Bob Graham as Mitzi's love interest, George Jessel playing himself pretending to be a nice man, and several big, big production numbers. These have nothing to do with the vaudeville milieu and are set to undistinguished music, but the color's great, and Gwen Verdon gets to do some sinuous Jack Cole choreography in one of them. The whole thing's framed in a desperate-looking "Citizen Kane" conceit, as two studio boys are exhorted by Jessel to "come up with the REAL Eva Tanguay story," but the movie never wanders anywhere near the real Eva Tanguay story -- maybe it just wasn't that interesting. Worth looking at for the blazing Technicolor, the dances, and Mitzi, who's never less than professional, and never more.
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jjnxn-113 May 2014
What could have been a potentially interesting glimpse at a talent that has receded in the public memory is instead a garish collection of disconnected scenes.

To start the framing device of having George Jessel mounting a biography of Eva Tanguay is a wasted and contrived waste of time and should have been scuttled. Then the story such as it is tells you nothing of the real Miss Tanguay.

Mitzi is a talented girl, an excellent dancer and pleasing personality but she is given little too work with but she does wear feathers well. None of the male actors are given characters that make any sense. At least Oscar Levant gives his patented amusingly dry performance and gets a spotlight piano number which is the best thing in the movie. The leading man Bob Graham playing the fictitious Larry Woods is so bland he practically evaporates from the screen and makes no impact in the picture at all.

If you like flashy production numbers, staged by the legendary Jack Cole, than this has plenty to enjoy but if you want narrative structure along with them you won't find that here.
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Mitzi Gaynor gave a great performance in this film.
mauricelowe864 March 2004
I understand that The I Don't Care Girl was severely cut by Daryl F Zannuck which was his usual practice, despite this Mitzi showed what a Great talent she was, unlike other great female dancers of the time Mitzi was set apart because she had personality, I also think Mitzi was at the wrong studio and totally wasted in Hollywood, although she was'nt wasted in Las Vegas where she was the top box office star for years, and later her great tv shows.
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What's up with this one...
What could have been a very good musical ends up being bunch of mixed up scenes that make no sense whatsoever. Fox had a good idea with the material, but somehow botched it up. A good vehicle for poor Mitzi Gaynor, and she must have very dismayed with what ended up on the screen.

Fox Archives has released this recently along with other older films. Too bad they couldn't include the missing footage as it's very obvious scenes and details to the plot were left out on the 'cutting room floor', so to speak. The musical numbers, for the most part, are very good to excellent, even though they do not belong in the time element of the story. One very strange number, the second I DON'T CARE sequence, has Mizi changing costumes RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ACT, and a character that was long gone, back in the scene. I'm sure this number was supposed to be a 'dream sequence', that would be the only reasonable explanation!!!! What did Mr. Zanack have in mind when he edited this film??? I know he was responsible for all editing of films under his regime. He also ruined the fabulous MM movie, NIAGARA along with sever cuts to THERE'S NO BUSINESS LIKE SHOW BUSINESS. And he was supposed to be a 'movie' person? I think not.
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inspiring song
rowan19251 August 2009
In spite of its imperfections, the film contains one of the most inspiring performances of any song in any film. Mitzi Gaynor becomes Eva Tanguay, insists on coming out into the audience, hits a star quality personality in the song "I don't care" when she sings - "Let down the gangway, for I'm Eva Tanguay, and I - DON'T - CARE!!!" I have tried to find this on DVD, but it does not exist. CAn someone get this changed??? Does it exist on CD or MP3 anywhere? I believe that Judy Garland sang the song in the film "Good Old Summertime" but I can't find that either. I have been remembering this song for over fifty years now, which shows how memorable it is. Not many songs have this power to impress itself on the memory, and it is only because of the great performance of Mitzi Gaynor, who is apparently still going today with live performances!
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If you've ever wondered...
dish5530 July 2008
...why Mitzi Gaynor, certainly one of the most talented ladies in the business, never became a major movie star. here's your answer: too many movies like this. Taking a RASHAMON approach to the life of Eva Tanguay is certainly a novel idea, but right from the start post-production butchery is all too obvious and the remaining seventy-nine minutes make little or no sense what so ever. I truly believe someone was trying to do poor Miss Gaynor in with this one. Characters appear and disappear randomly, the score is mediocre at best, and the production numbers - where Miss Gaynor should really shine - are executed in such a sloppy, slap-dash way that it is hard to believe this film was released by a major studio. Gaynor shines during the first rendition of "I Don't Care" which is done in true (movie) vaudeville style and gives some glimpse of what the real Miss Tanguay must have been like as a performer, but the other numbers (I suppose those conceived by Jack Cole)are a mess, totally out of period, including a hep cat version of the title tune that has Mitzi dancing in a chug-chug style that does nothing to display her very real dancing talent. During this number her two male co-stars keep turning up in different guises long after one of them has left the story. Huh? Looking at a quartet of films (this mess, THE BLOODHOUNDS OF Broadway, DOWN AMONG THE SHELTERING PALMS, and GOLDEN GIRL) designed to make Miss Gaynor a star, one wonders what the powers that be were thinking. No wonder Marilyn arrived on the scene shortly there after and staked out the Fox lot for herself!
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Rashomon Don't Care Either
boblipton17 May 2008
The musical comedy biopic gets the Rashomon treatment in this faked-up biopic of Eva Tanguay, one of the great stars of turn-of-the-century vaudeville. Mitzi Gaynor, as always, gives a great performance and it's a pity that, with the exception of the movie version of SOUTH PACIFIC, she was always Fox's B musical star, doing whatever they gave her. The musical numbers are all overdone, as if choreographer Jack Cole is mocking the form; the semi-strip-tease to jazzed up Mozart (I'm not making this up! It's the most out-of-place dance number outside of Sally Forrest's weird one in EXCUSE MY DUST) and other numbers that recall LADY IN THE DARK -- all very modern for the era and absolutely bizarre in context.

Oscar Levant plays the piano magnificently a few times and David Wayne gives a typically graceful performance in support.
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edwagreen23 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
I didn't like the ending in this 1953 entertaining movie. Nice seeing David Wayne attempting a song and dance routine. Even though he mouthed the words, he got through it nicely.

The film tells the story of the making of a film based on Broadway luminary Eva Tanguay.

The dances and the songs centered around the theme of I don't care are marvelously staged.

Wayne appears in and out of the film and his telephone drunk scene was so similar to when he gave up Susan Hayward (Jane Froman) to Rory Calhoun via the phone again the year before in "With A Song in My Heart."

The film tells of different men in her life telling her story with differences that seem to come all together at the end.
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Meet George Jessel, Eva Tanguay his discovery....
mark.waltz11 March 2015
Warning: Spoilers
There's really a lack of cleverness in this "biography" of the forgotten "I Don't Care" girl Eva Tanguay who was a major vaudeville and musical revue star of the early 1900's. What had already been done (and much better) by Paramount with two films starring Betty Hutton about former stars Texas Guinan and Blossom Seeley became an imitation of her life which switched the facts around to make her more sympathetic than she probably was. Even with her as the leading heroine, she's not all that sympathetic, and pretty much a hot-tempered star who was notorious for her off-screen antics. In real life, Tanguay took a number away from the rising Sophie Tucker, while here, that is blamed on another star, played by Hazel Brooks, for doing the same thing to her.

There's no sense in breaking the story down by producer George Jessel's attempts to film Eva's story by talking to two of the men who knew her best and trying to find the one she loved for years. David Wayne plays a drunken partner whose career fell apart as hers rose (think of a vaudeville version of "A Star is Born") and Oscar Levant an egotistical producer who claims his version is the truth. Other than the first version of the title song (performed as she ambles up from the stage to a box), the numbers are badly staged, the Ziegfeld Follies reprise of "I Don't Care" seeming more like something Marilyn Monroe would have turned down in present day character than something the real Eva would have done in 1906.

There's not even enough novelty numbers to make this entertaining enough, even though Wayne does get to reprise "This is My Favorite City" which Dan Dailey and Betty Grable had done with more success in "Mother Wore Tights". In fact, there's really little story, and at under 80 minutes, this really never gets a chance to develop Eva as a real character and make her interesting beyond simply being an almost forgotten historical entertainment figure. Mitzi Gaynor does her best in the title role, doing what she's directed to do, but overall this ranks as one of her few disappointments.
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release full version of I don't care girl
theduchess868 September 2007
perhaps now twentieth century fox are at last releasing Mitzi's bloodhounds of Broadway, they might set about putting out the full version of the I don't care girl, it would be great, although it was a silly plot and not at all true to the life of Eva Tangway, and Mitzi leading men did not help her at all, Mitzi 's fabulous dance numbers showed why she was completely wasted in Hollywood, would love this film to be released with all the great production no's that were cut, also great to see Mitzi's TV shows being released on DVD, why do these things take so long? another great mitzi film although it was pure sinatra, not released is the great film the joker is wild, lets hope that one is released too
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