13 September 2003 | yessdanc
MGM HASN'T A CLUE W/ SWING FEVER!
It's a shame Kay Kyser's 5 picture deal w/ RKO ended with AROUND THE WORLD('43), because when MGM signed him for this one film, they dropped the ball big time. It's a poor story that barely features Kyser's great band, and has an overlong production number, MISSISSIPPI DREAMBOAT. I think this is the first onscreen appearance of Lena Horne, who sings a song then disappears, but i could be mistaken about that. Blonde and sexy Marilyn Maxwell plays Kyser's love interest, which seemed a bit far-fetched until Kyser's real life widow, Georgia Carroll, informed me Kay and Marilyn dated seriously in real life! THERE IS A CLASSIC VISUAL GAG where Kyser's rehearsing his band and identifies a couple of strangers playing along. Kyser (as Lowell Blackford) doesn't recognize them, but tells them they can't play his music very well. The camera pans over to TOMMY DORSEY and HARRY JAMES who leave the bandstand, complaining " No one can play this music. This guy'll never get anywhere. Besides, he looks too much like KAY KYSER!!" Best line in the film! In conclusion, SWING FEVER never reaches fever pitch, and the dummies at MGM never tried again w/ Kyser, who, by the way was a big big star at this time. Good posters, though!!