16 April 2009 | wes-connors
A Variety Show Lifted by Doris Day and Gene Nelson
A slew of big-name entertainers seek to entertain film audiences, by entertaining troops headed for the Korean War, from California's Travis Air Force Base. Up-and-comers Janice Rule (as Nell Wayne) and Ron Hagerthy (as Rick Williams) provide an interconnecting romantic storyline, but it's really a Warner Brothers variety show. "Starlift" is light and pleasant, with your enjoyment dependent upon your interest in the performers and material on screen.
Doris Day was, at the time, the nation's newest box office sensation; and, she generously contributes the Gershwins' "''S Wonderful", plus the lovely medley "You Oughta Be in Pictures"/"You Do Something to Me". Day was always great with a duet, and the breezy "You're Gonna Lose Your Gal" is perfect, with Gordon MacRae. By the way, that Monaco/Young duet sounds nothing like Lennon/McCartney's "You're Gonna Lose That Girl"; rather, it sounds very much like Elvis Presley's "How Would You Like To Be".
Gene Nelson is the other undeniable another highlight. His dancing, on "What Is This Thing Called Love?" (with Ms. Rule) is spectacular And, Mr. Nelson's "It's Magic" (which had already been a big hit for Day) is probably the best production in the film. Together, Day and Nelson could make the most ordinary vehicles shine brighter.
****** Starlift (12/14/51) Roy Del Ruth ~ Janice Rule, Doris Day, Gene Nelson