Treasure this multitalented Technicolor musical-variety extravaganza, featuring Gloria De Haven at her teeny bopper prime, and the lovely Ginny Simms, an equal singing talent, minimally featured by Hollywood, whose singing voice reminds me of Dina Shore's. Gloria was featured in two other musicals that year, but those were in B&W. Here we get to see her and so many others in splashy Technicolor.
My title is a quote from personable George Murphy, as he argues with stage singer Helen Hoyt(Ginny Simms) about which production she should be starring in. Murphy's character(Johnny), as a stage producer, provides most of the interpersonal friction in this film. Besides his sometimes stormy relation with Ginny, he wants to tell sister Patsy(Gloria) she must finish high school and college before she can think about a career, and argues with his semi-retired father show producer(Charles Winninger) about what shows to produce, and where.
Ginny and Gloria are the female costars, with underutilized Nancy Walker an occasional presence in comic relief. George Murphy is the male star, with Gloria's boyfriend Ray(Kenny Bowers), Charles Winninger("State Fair"), friend Ben Blue, servant "Rochester" Anderson(Jack Benny's foil) and band leader Tommy Dorsey the other main male characters.Ben and Rochester are present mostly for occasional comic relief. Winninger, Bowers(who looks and acts rather like Joe E. Brown) and Murphy also have comedic, as well as musical skills. Ben and Nancy also do a comical skit and dance involving milk bottles, accompanied by Dorsey's band.Impersonator Dean Murphy adds further to the comedic element with his impersonations of a variety of film and political figures of the time. I didn't catch who he was impersonating in about half the cases, but I clearly detected Joe E. Brown, Edgar Bergen's Charlie McCarthy and Mortimer Snerd puppets(his best and longest act), Jimmy Stewart, FDR and wife Eleanor.
Ginny was 10 years older than Gloria and taller. Thus, she plays the grande dame actress/singer to Gloria's teeny bopper character, who is just trying to get started in show business. The wardrobe department gave Ginny a variety a solid one color outfits. While Dorsey's band and singing group are doing "Irresistible You", she makes her grand entry into a nightspot in a striking all white outfit, including a large ermine stole, which contrasted nicely with her dark hair. In her "Amor" number, she was in an all black traditional Spanish garb, including a large headpiece. She wore a blond wig, again, to contrast with her dress. The accompanying Matadors had capes black on one side and pink on the other, to match her dress and the pink flowers in her hair. She sports a simple blue evening dress while crooning "All the Things You Are" to Murphy in his studio. In her final appearance, she is in a flaming orange gown, reclining in a see-through love seat set on a large float-like circular platform that initially is distantly centered in a dark backdrop, behind a veil curtain. Her float descends and comes forward as she croons "Irresistible You", then "All the Things You Are". She is accompanied by a female chorus in bright contrasting blue and pink outfits. This is a variation on the 'Goddess descending to earth' theme, which was given to a number of singers in the '40s. De Haven did it in "Step Lively"; Rita Hayworth in "Cover Girl", Judy Garland in " 'Till the Clouds Roll By" and Arlene Dahl, in "Three Little Words". This performance differs from the others in that Ginny does not descend on foot and she has a female, rather than a male, chorus awaiting her(because the chorus had just finished a number backing up Winninger and Murphy).
In Gloria's best number, she does a song and dance to "Pretty Baby", first with Kenny, later with Winninger. The latter is a daydream sequence in which Winninger imagines he is dancing with Gloria in a gay '90s setting, when he was a young man in vaudeville. Before this, Winninger does a comical trombone duet with Dorsey to "I Love Corny Music". Murphy also gets to do a couple of dances here and there, being an ex-vaudevillian himself.He starts with a beautiful romantic dance with an unnamed partner in a gorgeous yellow gown.
African Americans have a good presence, with gravely- voiced 'Rochester' as comedian and Hazel Scott playing a classical jazz number on the piano, accompanied by an AA band. Lena Horne is featured in two numbers: the colorful sensual "Brazilian Boogie", which includes quite a few AA extras,some in Carmen-Miranda-like outfits, and the more conventional "Somebody Loves Me", both among her most memorable performances.
I can't leave out the show stopper: the unique song and contortionist dance/performance by the young Ross Sisters. This has to be seen to be believed! One sister would be sensational enough, but 3 sisters equally talented makes it 3X as amazing. You can also see this on the "That's Entertainment" compendium DVD.
Although Nancy Walker hardly had the looks and personality of a leading lady, she had tremendous talent as a comedienne, as well as musical and dancing talent. She had several smash hit roles on Broadway in the early '40s, as well as later success on TV. Unfortunately, she only had a couple of roles in Hollywood films, with the best in "Best Foot Forward". We could have used another good skit featuring her in the present film.