The Eugene O'Neill play, Ah. Wilderness with its account of a turn-of-the-century smalltown New England family, provides admirable setting, story, color and mood for the musical numbers and script. The musical numbers, tastefully chosen and skillfully staged, are not spotted arbitrarily, but stem naturally from the situations.

The Eugene O’Neill play, Ah. Wilderness with its account of a turn-of-the-century smalltown New England family, provides admirable setting, story, color and mood for the musical numbers and script. The musical numbers, tastefully chosen and skillfully staged, are not spotted arbitrarily, but stem naturally from the situations.

For example, the film is introduced by a song called ‘It’s Our Home Town’. Walter Huston sings the first chorus, as the newspaper publisher, with the other characters taking it up to identify themselves and plant the general story line.

The story emphasizes the puppy-love romance between the publisher’s son and girl across the street. Respectively Mickey Rooney and Gloria de Haven. Except for some laughable mugging by the former, they make an appealing pair, and their musical numbers are nicely done.

Huston is fine as the understanding Nat Miller, the boy’s father. Frank Morgan achieves a nice blend of comedy and pathos as Uncle Sid.

Mamoulian’s direction has style, is well paced and without sacrificing story credibility makes the songs stand out.

Summer Holiday

Production

M-G-M. Director Rouben Mamoulian; Producer Arthur Freed; Screenplay Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Irving Brecher, Jean Holloway; Camera Charles Schoenbaum; Editor Albert Akst; Music Harry Warren, Ralph Blane; Art Director Cedric Gibbons, Jack Martin Smith

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1948. Running time: 92 MIN.

With

Mickey Rooney Gloria de Haven Walter Huston Frank Morgan Agnes Moorehead Marilyn Maxwell
Want Entertainment News First? Sign up for Variety Alerts and Newsletters!
Post A Comment 0