I admit - I kind of like a good musical now and again. I'd wanted to see this for years and when it was on PBS the other night, I decided to give it a shot. Basically, it is a movie made up of clips of old musicals from 1928- 1958. The old ones were pretty boring. The Judy Garland ones were pretty boring. But the Fred Astaire clips were astounding. As were the Gene Kelly ones. I could do without Seven Brides for Seven Brothers though. I read while this was on and only gave my full attention to it about half of the time.
I think I'm kind of obsessed with Esther Williams now. I couldn't find the clip that they showed but I did fine one close enough.
Other interesting aspects: I really liked the 15 minute segments that each narrator received. Each was decked out in their best 70's regalia. Sinatra's tie was humongous, Elizabeth Taylor was a freak, Mickey Rooney is a nutjob. There was also Gene Kelly looking dapper and Bing Crosby as well. The movie came out right after Watergate and America needed some good 'ol nostalgia. This movie was a big hit and spawned an immediate sequel.
I don't think I'll ever get over that completely bizarre clip from a Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney movie that featured an entire chorus of dancing men done up in blackface. This was presented in 1974 with nary a commment from the narrators.
Directed by Jack Haley, Jr.
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