Easter Parade (1948)

Approved   |    |  Musical, Romance


Easter Parade (1948) Poster

A nightclub performer hires a naive chorus girl to become his new dance partner to make his former partner jealous and to prove he can make any partner a star.


7.4/10
8,965


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  • Easter Parade (1948)
  • Fred Astaire and Judy Garland in Easter Parade (1948)
  • Judy Garland in Easter Parade (1948)
  • Judy Garland and Peter Lawford in Easter Parade (1948)
  • Fred Astaire and Judy Garland in Easter Parade (1948)
  • Ann Miller in Easter Parade (1948)

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26 July 2006 | bkoganbing
9
| "Oh I Could Write a Sonnet, about your Easter bonnet."
For the only teaming of Fred Astaire and Judy Garland, Gene Kelly had to break an ankle playing touch football although he told the studio it was in rehearsal. So Fred Astaire who after another Irving Berlin musical extravaganza, Blue Skies at Paramount, got pulled out of retirement for this film. It was a happy accident for film fans.

Easter Parade by this time had become the national anthem for Easter and enjoys a grand seasonal popularity as Irving Berlin's White Christmas also. It was originally written for the musical revue As Thousands Cheer in 1933 and sung as a duet by Clifton Webb and Marilyn Miller. Bing Crosby reprised it in Holiday Inn in a very nice number driving a horsedrawn sleigh from church Easter services. But usually when it is presented visually, the clip of Judy Garland singing it in the finale is the one always shown.

By the way the melody originally was for a lyric entitled Smile and Show Your Dimple which bombed for Irving Berlin. Berlin was quoted as saying that popular songs are a perfect marriage between words and music and in this case the melody got divorced and married a second lyric successfully.

Easter Parade is a good mixture of old Irving Berlin material and new songs written for this film. Fred Astaire shines with one of the new ones in Stepping Out With My Baby which is a good followup to Putting On the Ritz which Astaire sang and danced to in Blue Skies. And Judy just shines in Better Luck Next Time.

The plot is a pretty simple one and for the MGM opulence that their musicals were known for their are very few actual speaking roles in this film. It's a romantic quadrangle with Fred Astaire being dumped by his erstwhile partner Ann Miller and then taking on Judy Garland in one of those 'I'll show her' moments of bravado. Peter Lawford's around to get whoever Astaire doesn't.

The acting honors in Easter Parade go to Judy. For all that talent Judy Garland was a most insecure person in life and she drew from that in bringing Hannah Brown to the screen.

Ann Miller's big number is Shaking the Blues Away which Ruth Etting introduced in 1927. Doris Day in fact does it in Love Me or Leave Me. Still Ann makes it more of a dance number than Doris did which is what Irving Berlin originally intended it to be.

The thing about Easter Parade and so many other films like it is that all that talent was contracted to that studio. You can't make a film like Easter Parade today because you'd have to pay full market price for the talent, even as Irving Berlin's numbers slip year after year into public domain.

The Easter parade with women dressed in their finest most tasteful frock is still a New York tradition on Easter Sunday. So is this film.

Critic Reviews


Did You Know?

Trivia

The film deleted a musical number, "Mr. Monotony," in which Judy Garland wears the same costume she would immortalize two years later in Summer Stock (1950) in the number "Get Happy"; the costume was a man's tuxedo coat and hat. For years, there were rumors that "Get Happy" was cut from another film and inserted into Summer Stock (1950). It is believed that this song being removed from "Easter Parade" is the origin of that rumor. An abbreviated version of the "Mr. Monotony" number was included in That's Entertainment! III (1994), and the complete number is included as an extra on the Warner Home Video Easter Parade (1948) DVD.


Quotes

Don Hewes: Hat please.
Essie, Nadine's Maid: Oh, Mr. Hewes.
Don Hewes: Hello darling! Where are you?
Nadine Hale: Oh Don, I've been trying to call you.
Don Hewes: Uh, Essie, will you help me with these things please?
Don Hewes: Thank you. Well, I got all tied up with an Easter rabbit. Hello sweetheart.
Don Hewes: Here.
Don Hewes: .
Nadine Hale: Oh I wish you hadn't.
Don Hewes: Oh....


Goofs

During "I Want To Go Back To Michigan", the trombone plays a muted solo, yet the trombone is open - no mute is used.


Alternate Versions

Judy Garland sings "Mr. Monotony" in a sequence cut from the film. An excerpt from the number was included in That's Entertainment! III (1994). The 2004 DVD box set release of all three That's Entertainment films contains a bonus DVD that includes the complete performance of this number.


Soundtracks

A Fella with an Umbrella
(uncredited)
Written by
Irving Berlin
Sung by Peter Lawford and Judy Garland

Storyline

Plot Summary


Genres

Musical | Romance

Box Office

Budget:

$2,503,654 (estimated)

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