Musical Monday: Show Business (1944)

It’s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals. In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 500. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals. show biz

This week’s musical: “Show Business” –Musical #516

Studio: RKO Pictures

Director: Edwin L. Marin

Starring: Eddie Cantor, George Murphy, Joan Davis, Nancy Kelly, Constance Moore, Donald Douglas, Dorothy Malone (uncredited)

Plot: Supposedly loosely based on Eddie Cantor’s rise to stardom, popular burlesque star George Doane (Murphy) takes Eddie Martin (Cantor) under his wing after Cantor wins amatuer night. The men meet Joan (Davis) and Connie (Ford) and the four of them decide to team up and try to strike it big in vaudeville. In between the singing and dancing, George and Connie fall in love.


-Produced by Eddie Cantor

-This picture was to celebrate Eddie Cantor’s 35th year in entertainment and is supposed to be a fictional biography of Cantor’s career, according to the 1944 New York Times review.

Highlights: -Joan Davis pretending to sing opera

Eddie Cantor, Constance Ford, Joan Davis, George Murphy in

Eddie Cantor, Constance Ford, Joan Davis, George Murphy in “Show Business.”

Notable Songs:

-“Good Ole Fashioned Girl” performed by the four leads

-“They’re Wearin’ ‘Em Higher in Hawaii” performed by George Murphy

-“I Don’t Want to Get Well” performed by Eddie Cantor

-“It Had to Be You” performed by George Murphy and Constance Ford

My Review: For a movie that is celebrating Eddie Cantor’s 35th year in entertainment, “Show Business” seems pretty lackluster. While I love George Murphy and enjoy Joan Davis’s humor, you somehow think a celebratory anniversary film would be in Technicolor with loads of stars. However, in comparison to the “Eddie Cantor Story” biopic, this film is gold. Despite this, “Show Business” is a charming little film filled with a dozen songs. I think the thing that struck me the most is how beautifully the quartet’s singing voices blended perfectly in harmony. Really lovely and superb. I also had a few laugh out loud moments at Joan Davis and Eddie Cantor’s humor. “Show Business” is an easily forgettable film in the grand scheme of movie musicals. But for 92 minutes when you sit down and watch it are a lot of fun. Check out the Comet Over Hollywood Facebook page, follow on Twitter at @HollywoodComet or e-mail at