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Opening Salvo For Mad About Musicals Course

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The Music Man. The movie cast is so appealing--especially that force of nature, Robert Preston! I love all the music (barbershop!!!), I love the story. It's all so nostalgic and homey and fun to me.

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5 hours ago, lbevilacqua said:

Wow! A great thread! 

 

I find myself rewatching Singin' in the Rain often. I just read a book all about the making of the film. It's titled, "Singin' in the Rain: The Making of an American Masterpiece"
If you're looking for a fun summer read, I highly recommend. 

Other favorites include: Everyone Says I Love You (1996), Funny Girl (1968), Summer Stock (1950), Camp (2003), Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953).

I'm not sure if this counts, but I love Waiting For Guffman (1996). I can quote it backwards and forwards. I work in musical theater often and it just makes me laugh out loud, every time. And for the sheer camp-factor - Xanadu (1980). I can't resist the lasers, leg warmers, and the roller skating. 

I'm giving a BIG THUMBS up for Waiting For Guffman. I've done enough theater to recognize that in crowd and the 'surprising' newcomer! Love that movie--and its music!

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So many. I mean, if it’s a musical, I’ll almost assuredly love it. Even the Greatest Showman. Wow! La La Land. All pushing the boundaries and still doing new things after 90 years of musicals.  But probably my favourite is a lesser known one, Two Weeks With Love. Superb and so funny. Love it. My dear departed Mum called me up one Saturday afternoon 20 something years ago to tell me it was being shown on a free to air channel in Eastern Australia. And we just HAD to watch it. It’s been our favourite ever since.  

A very young Debbie Reynolds is amazing and so cute and funny, her sense of comedic timing evident even at such a young age.  Riccardo Montalban such a debonair character and dances so well.  But Jane Powell, wow  that voice AND she can dance too.  So many great songs but such a fun film.  It’s not the greatest but it’s my favourite because it no worries reminds me so much of my Mum and how much she loved musicals.  I fell in love with Doris Day because of her.  I still remember the weird looks I got from the guy at the video store as we rented all of Doris' big hits. So funny.  He just didn’t get it.  So many don’t but how sad that they are missing our on this amazing genre that illicits such fondness and warmth of heart.  Is it the dancing, the singing, the storylines?  I think it’s everything put together.  Wow.  

 

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There are so many musical that I love. Which have I seen the most? Well, The Wizard of Oz is my favorite movie, so...

Then there are movies I usually watch on holidays. I have a tradition of watching White Christmas every Christmas Eve. I have many Christmas movies, but other musicals I might watch include Holiday Inn, Meet Me in St. Louis, and March of the Wooden Soldiers (aka. Babes in Toyland, with Laurel and Hardy). Also, 8 Women, which is a French film. It's more of a mystery, but each of the eight women has a musical number.

Other holiday movies: Little Nelly Kelly for St. Patrick's Day. Easter Parade and Jesus Christ, Superstar for Easter. I have two movies of JCS, and try to watch them both. (I've also seen it live in three different productions, two starring Ted Neeley and one with Carl Anderson also. It amazes me how many different ways they have found to present this work, as every one has been really different, as well as the recent one on TV.)

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They change as I age, but one of them is "Hair".  There is something about the movie that is a bit off and I never can figure quite what that is...maybe that the cast members don't necessarily seem to be making the same movie, telling the same story.  And there was such a brouhaha about the film...that it had, by necessity of the medium made it too structured.  Yet, the music is wonderful!!  So, that one still will have me watching intently.

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"The Band Wagon" is probably my favorite musical. I have seen it more than twenty times and it never gets old or tiresome. That the musical they are attempting to mount is so awful and it forces Tony and Company to go back to light musical comedy and all parties (both on screen and we in the audience) are all the better for it.

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White Christmas was the VERY first musical I ever saw. I was in 6th grade and my drama teacher put on a Musical appreciation class. That where it all started for me! Love Bing Crosby and Danny Kay! To this day I watch it every year at least once! Or to be truthful 20 times! 

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“Oklahoma!”, “Kiss Me, Kate”, and “The Fiddler on the Roof”-I practically watched these 3 on a loop when I was a kid.

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The ones I watch over and over again are anything musical/comedy/romance from the 30's - 40's - 50's, and I have seen them all more times than I could count.  The reason?  Complete and total escapism.  Something that holds my attention long enough to forget all of the strife in this world.  I guess the same reason they were so popular for moviegoers during the Depression and WWII.  I love these musicals because there is no violence, no buildings exploding, no cussing, no nudity, and no strife that isn't solved within the next 2 hours by the end of the film.  Honestly, life is stressful enough, why would I want to watch a stressful movie for ENTERTAINMENT?  Give me something to make me smile, make me laugh, and even sing along (well, at least in my head....)

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There are so many I can watch over and over again. I'll go with 'An American in Paris'. First off it features the music of George Gershwin which I love. The choreography is amazing especially the bold choice that was made to include the extended dream sequence that challenged audiences to focus their senses just a tad longer than they were used to. Art for Art's sake in the Hollywood Musical 

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It is impossible to choose one musical, but my top 5 I can watch over and over:

Gigi     My Fair Lady     Hard Day's Night     The Sound of Music

An American in Paris (well, really, any Gene Kelly musical!) 

I would have to say the top 3 factors for why I love these: Star factor, Song(s) factor, and Visual Appeal factor.  

 

 

 

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I think Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is my most-watched pure movie musical.  Love the singing and the dancing and all the colour-coding in the characters' costumes.  My most-watched "Broadway" movie musical is probably Fiddler on the Roof, since it's also my most-watched stage musical.  I do like how the movie fleshes out the world with real animals and wider scope for the action.  Never thought to ponder where it was filmed -- will have to check it out during this course.

 

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My favorite movie is My Fair Lady. But I can watch anything Gene Kelly, Judy Garland, and Fred Astaire over and over again and never tire of it. My favorite movie genre is musicals. 

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It's impossible to choose ONE favorite musical.  I love so many!  My love for movie musicals began when I was 7 years old, and South Pacific was released.  I saw it in the theater with my parents and fell in love with it.  The music, the gorgeous scenery and a little girl's crush on John Kerr - it was perfect, and I have probably seen it at least twenty times.  Other favorites over the years are My Fair Lady, Camelot, Holiday Inn, A Chorus Line (more so on the stage than on film), West Side Story, anything with Fred Astaire and many more that I can't think of at this moment.

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It is so hard for a lover of music and musicals like me to narrow my favorite or one that I come back to frequently down to one. However, if I had to name one, okay two, that occupy that position for me, it would be West Side Story and Carousel.  I often show West Side Story in my music class and many students (high school) today find it corny, yet by the end many of them are hooked.  As for me, as dated as it is, there is an edginess to the subject matter which is enhanced by the unique and genre-changing music of Bernstein and Sondheim at the time.  Funny how the subject matter actually is quite timely again with the emphasis on the "new" immigrant group and the opposition and oppression faced.  I also love Carousel. Again, subject matter that on the surface appears quite remarkable for a musical ("domestic violence" to a degree), yet its issues are always balanced and enhanced by the music.  I believe Carousel possesses some of Rodgers and Hammerstein's most tuneful music.  Both works also are emotional powerhouses that never cease to leave me teary-eyed!

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I always watch Broadway Melody of 1940. I love Fred Astaire and Eleanor Powell and it was one of the first musicals I watched with my dad. I know watch it with my 11 year old son and share some of the same memories.

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I was born and raised in Missouri so I love the history alluded to in Meet Me in St. Louis. The 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition (aka the World’s Fair) was a tremendous event which becomes a fabulous backdrop for this film. Judy Garland was wonderful in this film! The songs are memorable and sing-able. I’ve enjoyed this movie over and over.

Another favorite musical is Singin’ in the Rain. Debbie Reynolds, Gene Kelly and Donald O’Conner give believable performances as three great friends going up against the powers that be - and WINNING! It always leaves me with a positive feeling. Their singing and dancing is upbeat and energetic as well as technically precise. Donald O’Conner became one of my favorites after seeing him in this movie.

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In my limited experience I have found myself watching Fiddler on the Roof (1971) over and over again! I am so glad I own the movie so I don't have to rent it five million times!? 

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Every holiday season, I have to watch White Christmas with whatever family members are around. We love all the song and dance numbers, but when the song "Sisters" comes on, I grab my fan (just a small one) and join in on the fun. I don't know why, but it's just not Christmas without watching this great musical at least one time!

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So many musicals so hard to pick just one. I love the Fred and Ginger movies. I also adore Seven brides for seven brothers, anything with Gene Kelly, Bing Crosby; heck I don't think there's a musical I don't like!

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Interesting no one's mentioned Doctor Doolittle.  Not a fave of mine either.  But I thought I'd share that it's one of the films that's discussed in the book by Mark Harris, Pictures at a Revolution: Five Movies and the Birth of the New Hollywood.  An interesting book that looks at 5 films from 1967/68 and how they changed the terrain in Hollywood.  It also looks at Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?, Bonnie & Clyde, The Graduate, and In the Heat of the Night.  Lots of interesting history and backstory about the making of each film.  Evidently Rex Harrison was a real piece of work on the set (and even getting hired) in that musical!

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My favorite movie is Singin' in the Rain.  Not just favorite musical - favorite movie.   I was lucky to have a mom who introduced me to classic film when I was little and I have a vivid memory of watching it for the first time when I was around 7 or 8.  It just gets better and better each time I watch it.  Setting aside the amazing music and cast, it is a homage to early film, a humorous poke at the studio system and the egos of actors.  

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13 hours ago, Sarah Last said:

I have always had a yearly tradition of watching 1776 on the 4th of July.  I have always considered 1776 one of the best musicals for learning about American History.  The movie is absolutely perfect and so are the actors and the music.

Me too!

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