Musical Monday: Road to Utopia (1946)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

road to utopiaThis week’s musical:
Road to Utopia (1946) – Musical #148

Studio:
Paramount Pictures

Director:
Hal Walker

Starring:
Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Dorothy Lamour, Hillary Brooke, Douglass Dumbrille, Jack LaRue, Robert Barrat
Himself: Robert Benchley

Plot:
Vaudeville performers Duke (Crosby) and Chester (Hope) escape the law by traveling to the Klondike during the gold rush. They are mistaken for two cut-throat murderers with a valuable map, which singer Sal (Lamour) and Kate (Brooke) try to get from the men.

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Musical Monday: Cowboy Canteen (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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

cowboy canteen2This week’s musical:
Cowboy Canteen (1944) – Musical #688

Studio:
Columbia Pictures

Director:
Lew Landers

Starring:
Charles Starrett, Jane Frazee, Barbara Jo Allen (as Vera Vague), Tex Ritter, Guinn ‘Big Boy’ Williams
Themselves: The Mills Brothers, Roy Acuff and His Smoky Mountain Boys and Girls, Jimmy Wakely and His Saddle Pals, The Tailor Maids

Plot:
Instead of going on a vacation, Connie (Frazee) and her singing group decide to take a job working on a ranch. When the girls arrive, Steve (Starrett), the owner of the ranch, is about to enlist in the military and he’s angry that the new ranch hands are women. The ranch is transformed into a canteen to entertain troops.

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Musical Monday: Sweater Girl (1942)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

sweater girl5This week’s musical:
Sweater Girl (1942) – Musical #684

Studio:
Paramount Pictures

Director:
William Clemens

Starring:
Eddie Bracken, Betty Jane Rhodes, June Pressier, Phillip Terry, Nils Asther, Frieda Inescort, Kenneth Howell, Johnny Johnston (as Johnnie Johnston), William Henry, Ella Neal, Minerva Urecal, Robert Cherry, Charles D. Brown

Plot:
Right before graduation, a group of college students are putting on a school musical starring Louise Menard (Rhodes) and Jack Mitchell (Bracken), who believes he has better ideas than Happy (Henry), the play’s director. During rehearsals, two of their classmates are murdered, and the students try to get to the bottom of it.

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Musical Monday: Miracle in Harlem (1948)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Miracle in Harlem (1948) – Musical #662

Studio:
Herald Pictures

Director:
Jack Kemp

Starring:
Hilda Offley, Sheila Guyse, Kenneth Freeman, William Greaves, Sybil Lewis (billed as Sybyl Lewis), Creighton Thompson, Laurence Criner, Jack Carter, Stepin Fetchit,
Specialty performers: Juanita Hall, Norma Shepherd, Lynn Proctor Trio, Lavada Carter, Savannah Churchill

Plot:
Aunt Hattie (Offley) and her niece Julie (Guyse) run a small candy store. They have a small location and their only help is Julie’s boyfriend Bert (Greaves) and the handyman, Swifty (Fetchit). Julie and Bert want to expand, but Aunt Hattie resists. Wealthy Albert Marshall (Criner) of the big business Harlem Candy Manufacturers tries to put Julie and Aunt Hattie out of business. Marshall and his son Jim (Freeman) trick Julie out of the candy store, but when Marshall turns up dead, Julie is accused.

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Musical Monday: Rhapsody in Blue (1945)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Rhapsody in Blue (1945) – Musical #211

Studio:
Warner Bros.

Director:
Irving Rapper

Starring:
Robert Alda, Joan Leslie, Alexis Smith, Charles Coburn, Julie Bishop, Albert Bassermann, Morris Carnovsky, Rosemary DeCamp, Herbert Rudley, Darryl Hickman, Mickey Roth, Andrew Tombes, Will Wright, Johnny Downs, Gower Champion (uncredited)
Themselves: Oscar Levant, Paul Whiteman, Hazel Scott, George White, Al Jolson, Elsa Maxwell, Anne Brown, Tom Patricola

Plot:
A biographical film on composer and musician George Gershwin (Alda). The film follows his rise to fame to his death in 1937.

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Musical Monday: In the Good Old Summertime (1949)

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.

This week’s musical:
“Meet Me After the Show” – Musical #25

Studio:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Director:
Robert Z. Leonard

Starring:
Judy Garland, Van Johnson, S.Z. “Cuddles” Sakall, Buster Keaton, Spring Byington, Clinton Sundberg, Marcia Van Dyke, Lillian Bronson, Liza Minnelli, Joi Lansing (uncredited), Chester Clute (uncredited), Anna Q. Nilsson (uncredited), Charles Smith (uncredited)

Plot:
A musical remake of the 1940 film “Shop Around the Corner,” “In the Good Ole Summertime” takes place in the early 1900s in Chicago. Veronica Fisher (Garland) is corresponding through letters with an unknown man.

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Musical Monday: The Amazing Mrs. Holliday (1943)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
The Amazing Mrs. Holliday (1943) – Musical #632

Studio:
Universal Studios

Director:
Bruce Manning and uncredited Jean Renoir

Starring:
Deanna Durbin, Edmond O’Brien, Barry Fitzgerald, Arthur Treacher, Harry Davenport, Grant Mitchell, Frieda Inescort, Elisabeth Risdon, Jonathan Hale, Esther Dale, Gus Schilling, Philip Ahn (uncredited), Irving Bacon (uncredited), Richard Loo (uncredited)
The Children: Christopher Severn, Yvonne Severn, Vido Rich, Mila Rich, Teddy Infuhr, Linda Bieber, Diane DuBois, Bill Ward

Plot:
Ruth (Durbin) is an American who grew up with China with her missionary parents. After they died, she worked at a school and helped war orphans. When China was invaded by the Japanese, Ruth and the orphans leave to get to a safer area. With the help of Timothy Blake (Fitzgerald), Ruth and the eight children sneak on to Commodore Holliday’s cargo ship headed for the United States. When the ship is torpedoed, Ruth, the children and Timothy survive, and the Commodore dies. In order to get the children safely into the United States, Ruth poses as the Commodore’s widow. She runs into problems when she moves into the Commodore’s mansion and meets his wealthy relatives and grandson, Thomas Holliday (O’Brien).

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Musical Monday: Private Buckaroo (1942)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Private Buckaroo (1942) – Musical #627

Studio:
Universal Studios

Director:
Edward F. Cline

Starring:
Themselves: The Andrews Sisters (Patty Andrews, Maxene Andrews, Laverne Andrews), Harry James and his Music Makers, Helen Forrest, The Jivin’ Jacks and Jills
Stars: Dick Foran, Joe E. Lewis, Ernest Truex, Jennifer Holt, Shemp Howard, Richard Davies, Mary Wickes, Donald O’Connor, Peggy Ryan, Huntz Hall, Susan Levine, Sidney Miller (uncredited), Addison Richards (uncredited), Tommy Rall (uncredited), Gene O’Donnell (uncredited)

Plot:
Famed trumpet player Harry James (himself) is drafted at the start of World War II. His fellow nightclub performer, Lon Prentice (Foran), wants to enlist in the Army but keeps getting declined as 4F for flat feet. Lon finally is accepted into the Army, but at basic training, Lon doesn’t feel he needs to participate in military training.

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Musical Monday: Meet Me on Broadway (1946)

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 600. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals.

This week’s musical:
Meet Me on Broadway (1946) – Musical #648

Studio:
Columbia Pictures

Director:
Leigh Jason

Starring:
Marjorie Reynolds, Frederick Brady (billed as Fred Brady), Jinx Falkenburg, Spring Byington, Allen Jenkins, Gene Lockhart, Loren Tindall

Plot:
Broadway director Eddie Dolan (Brady) quits the show he’s directing over artistic differences with his producer. His star (and girlfriend) Ann Stallings (Reynolds) and songwriter Deacon McGill (Jenkins) quit with Eddie. Believing he can stage a better show without the involvement of a producer, Eddie searches for a new show. He lands in a small community who is putting on a country club show for charity, headed by Sylvia Kane Storm (Byington) and her son Bob (Tindall). The show may not be as profitable as he thinks.

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Musical Monday: “Best Foot Forward” (1943)

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.

This week’s musical:
Best Foot Forward” –Musical #103

Studio:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

Director:
Edward Buzzell

Starring:
Virginia Weidler, William Gaxton, Tommy Dix, Nancy Walker, June Allyson, Gloria DeHaven, Chill Wills, Harry James, Henry O’Neill, Sara Haden, Stanley Donen (uncredited cadet), James Ellison (uncredited cadet)
Themselves: Lucille Ball, Harry James and His Music Makers

Plot:
Bud Hooper (Dix), a cadet at a military school, sends a prom invitation to movie star Lucille Ball (as herself). Ball’s agent thinks it would be a great publicity stunt and she attends the dance, much to the chagrin of his girlfriend Helen (Weidler) and to Ball. However, since it was Helen who was approved to attend the dance, Bud as Ball pose as Helen.

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