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The Glenn Miller Story (1954)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, Music | 4 January 1954 (Japan)
Biography of bandleader Glenn Miller from his beginnings to his death over the English Channel in December 1944.

Director:

Anthony Mann
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Stewart ... Glenn Miller
June Allyson ... Helen Burger
Harry Morgan ... Chummy (as Henry Morgan)
Charles Drake ... Don Haynes
George Tobias ... Si Schribman
Barton MacLane ... General Arnold
Sig Ruman ... Kranz
Irving Bacon ... Mr. Miller
James Bell ... Mr. Burger
Kathleen Lockhart ... Mrs. Miller
Katherine Warren ... Mrs. Burger (as Katharine Warren)
Frances Langford ... Frances Langford
Louis Armstrong ... Louis Armstrong
Ben Pollack ... Ben Pollack
Gene Krupa ... Gene Krupa
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Storyline

The unemployed trombone player Glenn Miller is always broken, chasing his sound to form his band and hocking his instrument in the pawn house to survive. When his friend Chummy MacGregor is hired to play in the band of Ben Pollack, the band-leader listens to one Glenn's composition and invites him to join his band. While traveling to New York, Glenn visits his former girlfriend Helen Berger, in Boulder, Colorado, and asks her to wait for him. Two years later he quits the band and proposes Helen that moves to New York to marry him. After the success of "Moonlight Serenade", Glenn Miller's band becomes worldwide known and Glenn and Helen and their two children have a very comfortable life. Duting the World War II, Glenn enlists in the army and travels to Europe to increase the moral of the allied troops. In the Christmas of 1944, he travels from London to Paris for a concert to be broadcast; however his plane is never found in the tragic flight. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Their love made such wonderful music! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 January 1954 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Música y lágrimas See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)| Stereo (1985 re-release)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Harry Morgan, who plays Chummy MacGregor, co-starred with the real Glenn Miller in Orchestra Wives (1942). See more »

Goofs

When the band is playing Chattanooga Choo Choo, the bass player goes back and forth wearing sunglasses, then regular glasses. See more »

Quotes

Glenn Miller: Bought you a present for your birthday.
Helen Burger: My birthday? That isn't until next November.
Glenn Miller: This is for your last birthday...
See more »

Alternate Versions

Most current prints in circulation are the slightly shortened 113-minute 1959 re-release version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Drive-in Movie Memories (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

Little Brown Jug
(uncredited)
Written by Joseph Winner
Played and sung often throughout the picture
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A Quest for a Sound
24 June 2005 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

The Glenn Miller Story is a biographical tribute to a man who is always ranked as one of the great swing bandleaders of the late thirties to middle forties era. It is indeed fortunate that when James Stewart puts a pair of glasses on, he does actually look like the real Glenn Miller. I don't know what Helen Miller looked like, but I'm sure she was as supportive to her husband as June Allyson was to her screen hubby.

The Miller story begins with Stewart and pal Harry Morgan on the road as musicians. Stewart plays a slide trombone and has ideas of how the orchestra should sound as a whole. He spends a lot of time writing arrangements for the entire band. When they're not done right as is graphically shown in a scene when Miller's famous Moonlight Serenade is performed, he decides to form his own band.

He's still looking for that particular sound that he wants his orchestra to have and he chances on it in one of the more interesting scenes in the film. Swing fans when they hear it will recognize it as the genuine Glenn Miller.

One glaring fault for purists though is while the instrumentals are performed nicely, the vocal part of the Miller band is left out of the film. For whatever reason singers, Ray Eberle, Marian Hutton (Betty's sister)and most of all Gordon "Tex" Beneke are not in the film. In fact Chattanooga Choo Choo, Beneke's most famous number, is performed in the film by Frances Langford as herself.

My favorite scene in the film is the nightclub scene in Harlem on the Miller wedding night. June was definitely a patient wife, but hey, if you got a chance to jam with Louis Armstrong, you drop EVERYTHING for that opportunity. Gene Krupa and other top jazz musicians are in that scene with Stewart and Satchmo, making it a real treat for jazz aficionados.

For American music we are indeed fortunate that Glenn Miller succeeded in his quest for the right sound which is so lovingly captured in this film.


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