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RICH YOUNG AND PRETTY (1951)

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Wondering what others think of this film-- I found it on a disc I had and I watched it last night and again today. TCM doesn't air it very often, but I rather enjoy it!

 

 

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As far as minor musicals go, this one is quite entertaining. As usual, Jane Powell is a delight.  I especially like the song, "We Never Talk Much".  It's a bouncy little number, performed twice in the movie with two different pairs of singers.  Also featured is a nice arrangement of "The Old Piano Roll Blues."

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As far as minor musicals go, this one is quite entertaining. As usual, Jane Powell is a delight.  I especially like the song, "We Never Talk Much".  It's a bouncy little number, performed twice in the movie with two different pairs of singers.  Also featured is a nice arrangement of "The Old Piano Roll Blues."

I agree that the arrangements in this pictures are nicely done. And I love the pairing of Jane with Vic Damone, since their voices work together beautifully.

 

Another thing I like, on a more serious level, is that the film really has a message to make about xenophobia (fear of foreign culture). The father, played by Wendell Corey, believes that his marriage to Danielle Darrieux was a mistake and he has transferred his feelings on to his daughter, not to marry outside one's own culture. So she is persuaded to break things off with Damone's character, until at the end she discovers Darrieux is her mother and that she is half-French. It's a cathartic realization for her.

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TB, I had forgotten about that subtext that you mentioned.  It isn't too often that one can find a real message in musicals like this.  This makes me more eager than ever to see this again.  And I'm glad that you agree with me about the musical numbers.

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As far as minor musicals go, this one is quite entertaining. As usual, Jane Powell is a delight.  I especially like the song, "We Never Talk Much".  It's a bouncy little number, performed twice in the movie with two different pairs of singers.  Also featured is a nice arrangement of "The Old Piano Roll Blues."

I find that I, generally, prefer MGM's "minor" musicals to their major ones.

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I find that I, generally, prefer MGM's "minor" musicals to their major ones.

I would agree. They seem a little less pretentious, and still have the same great production values.

 

Some of the minor musicals from the 50s with Marge & Gower Champion are quite good, too.

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I really like Jane Powell and always enjoy her films.

 

My two favorites are "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" and "Royal Wedding".

 

Of course, I get a total kick out of the early ones: "Holiday in Mexico", "Three Daring Daughters", "A Date With Judy", "Luxury Liner" and "Nancy Goes To Rio".

 

I loved her bubbling personality and her coloratura voice.

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I really like Jane Powell and always enjoy her films.

 

My two favorites are "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" and "Royal Wedding".

 

Of course, I get a total kick out of the early ones: "Holiday in Mexico", "Three Daring Daughters", "A Date With Judy", "Luxury Liner" and "Nancy Goes To Rio".

 

I loved her bubbling personality and her coloratura voice.

All those films you mentioned are highly enjoyable. She never seemed to develop into a serious actress (neither did Deanna Durbin or Gale Storm) but given what she did in these pictures, she entertained audiences. And sometimes it's all that matters. 

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All those films you mentioned are highly enjoyable. She never seemed to develop into a serious actress (neither did Deanna Durbin or Gale Storm) but given what she did in these pictures, she entertained audiences. And sometimes it's all that matters. 

Jane Powell was magnetic - you wanted to watch her and listen to her singing, too.

 

She really did have an outstanding voice.

 

Even a minor musical like "Small Town Girl" is highly enjoyable - because she stars in it and is involved with Farley Granger.

 

And, being the star that she was, she was surrounded by a superb supporting cast like Anne Miller and Bobby Van.

 

(And Bob Fosse and Bobby Van add sparkle and verve to an otherwise undisinguished musical, "The Adventures of Dobie Gillis".)

 

RICHYOUNGANDPRETTY.jpg

 

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The opening number with Bobby Van is terrific.  That was the first time that I realized that Jane Powell could really dance. 

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The opening number with Bobby Van is terrific.  That was the first time that I realized that Jane Powell could really dance. 

At MGM, you had to take classes in everything.

 

Imagine my surprise at seeing Jimmy Stewart SING and DANCE in "Born To Dance".

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At MGM, you had to take classes in everything.

Probably because they didn't know which genres some of their new contract players would do well in with audiences. 

 

All the major studios had classes. Sometimes the classes were for fencing, for learning how to ride horses, etc.

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At MGM, you had to take classes in everything.

 

Imagine my surprise at seeing Jimmy Stewart SING and DANCE in "Born To Dance".

His singing was originally supposed to be sung by someone else.  But the voice of the man who did the voice over sounded too polished and not at all like Stewart's own voice which was so distinctive that with Cole Porter's permission Jimmy Stewart sand (he called in croaking) a song that introduced the world to Easy To Love, which would become a classic.

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Probably because they didn't know which genres some of their new contract players would do well in with audiences. 

 

All the major studios had classes. Sometimes the classes were for fencing, for learning how to ride horses, etc.

Imagine all the money you would have to pay today for all those lessons.  I should know having taken professional voice lessons.  Baack then you were given these lessons and were paid at the same time.

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Imagine all the money you would have to pay today for all those lessons.  I should know having taken professional voice lessons.  Baack then you were given these lessons and were paid at the same time.

Right...you could call it a paid internship in the movie/entertainment business.

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I am so happy to see " RICH YOUNG AND PRETTY " as the topic here. I love this very under - rated musical that rarely ever gets, shown, written about, or talked about by movie critics and fans of the old musicals. Jane Powell was so perfectly cast in this highly entertaining movie that co - starred Vic Damone. I think this was his very first movie. I loved all the songs from this and I have it on VHS from when I taped it off of Turner Classic Movies. Highly Recommended. Sincerely, Jay 

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I agree with you, Jay, about this delightful musical.  Of the musical numbers, I especially enjoy "We Never Talk Much" (a duet that is performed twice, with two different pairs) and Jane and Vic singing "The Old Piano Roll Blues".  Too bad that this movie is so often overlooked.

 

Terrence.

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I have always enjoyed Jane Powell. It was fun watching her "grow up" in the film industry and go from child vocal prodigy to polished, yet somewhat stereo-typed, actress. Rich, Young and Pretty was made as she turned the corner to adulthood. Although both accomplished vocalists and their voices complimented one another, I personally did not care for the pairing of Jane with Vic Damone from an acting standpoint. Maybe it was due to this film being Vic's introductory role. He did a fine job but undeniably gave the weakest performance out of the cast.

 

I was also disappointed in the recognizable lack of, and duplicity, of musical numbers. Danielle did far more numbers and doesn't have half the talent of someone of Jane's caliber. If that wasn't bad enough, they had Jane sing "The Old Piano Roll Blues" and "Deep in the Heart of Texas" in that corny Southern accent.

 

I don't mean to sound negative but I have seen all of Jane's films and, in comparison, this one just fell short of the mark for me. My favorite Jane Powell role was, and always will be, as Milly in "Seven Brides For Seven Brothers". Her pairing with Howard Keel was nothing short of magical...so magical in fact that, after the movie, they continued performing on stage in productions of "I Do, I Do" and "South Pacific".

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I have always enjoyed Jane Powell. It was fun watching her "grow up" in the film industry and go from child vocal prodigy to polished, yet somewhat stereo-typed, actress. Rich, Young and Pretty was made as she turned the corner to adulthood. Although both accomplished vocalists and their voices complimented one another, I personally did not care for the pairing of Jane with Vic Damone from an acting standpoint. Maybe it was due to this film being Vic's introductory role. He did a fine job but undeniably gave the weakest performance out of the cast.

 

I was also disappointed in the recognizable lack of, and duplicity, of musical numbers. Danielle did far more numbers and doesn't have half the talent of someone of Jane's caliber. If that wasn't bad enough, they had Jane sing "The Old Piano Roll Blues" and "Deep in the Heart of Texas" in that corny Southern accent.

 

I don't mean to sound negative but I have seen all of Jane's films and, in comparison, this one just fell short of the mark for me. My favorite Jane Powell role was, and always will be, as Milly in "Seven Brides For Seven Brothers". Her pairing with Howard Keel was nothing short of magical...so magical in fact that, after the movie, they continued performing on stage in productions of "I Do, I Do" and "South Pacific".

You're entitled to your opinion, of course...but it seems rather unfair to compare RICH YOUNG AND PRETTY with SEVEN BRIDES. That's like saying Orson Welles in THE THIRD MAN doesn't measure up to his masterpiece CITIZEN KANE. They're two different films and each one good in its own way.

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You're entitled to your opinion, of course...but it seems rather unfair to compare RICH YOUNG AND PRETTY with SEVEN BRIDES. That's like saying Orson Welles in THE THIRD MAN doesn't measure up to his masterpiece CITIZEN KANE. They're two different films and each one good in its own way.

You will have to forgive me if I gave you the impression I was comparing the two films. I was trying to state my personal disappointment with Rich, Young and Pretty in that Jane did not have more songs which truly spotlighted her incredible vocal abilities and was not impressed by their pairing her with Vic Damone...hence my "short of the mark" comment. I also stated I preferred her role in 7 Brides and her pairing with Howard Keel, but never discussed the pros or cons of 7 Brides itself. Having watched most of the musicals filmed between 1930 and 1965 and admit I have become somewhat opinionated but, I really do believe that every movie ever made has some intrinsic value...good or bad. Just as "beauty is in the eye of the beholder", I feel that the enjoyment of a film is in the eye of the viewer. Everyone has their own perception and opinion and, when backed by reasoning and not just blanket statements, I love discussing them. I also appreciate, and agree with, your Orson Welles analogy. Whereas The Third Man and Citizen Kane are both giants in the world of film noir...there is no fair comparison. Rich, Young and Pretty certainly has its own merits or I wouldn't have bothered watching it at least 8 times over the years. Then again, I have watched 7 Brides for 7 Brothers at least 25 times. LOL We all have our own favorites, just as we all have our own opinions. Obviously a true fan of cinematography, I look forward to hearing your comments in the future. Thanks for responding. By The way, I did like the pairing of Vic Damone with Debbie Reynolds in the movie Athena.

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Thanks for your reply alex...but I do think it's irrelevant to bring up SEVEN BRIDES and ATHENA when talking about RICH, YOUNG AND PRETTY. In the same way it wouldn't seem relevant to talk about RICH, YOUNG and PRETTY when discussing those other two films. They stand or fall on their own individual merits. 

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Thanks for your reply alex...but I do think it's irrelevant to bring up SEVEN BRIDES and ATHENA when talking about RICH, YOUNG AND PRETTY. In the same way it wouldn't seem relevant to talk about RICH, YOUNG and PRETTY when discussing those other two films. They stand or fall on their own individual merits. 

Sorry for being a little slow but I get the point. The title of the forum is Rich, Young, and Pretty and comments should be directed specifically towards this film. My apologies. I am new to forums, much less actually voicing my opinion in a public fashion. Being disabled, my life pretty much revolves around my twin dogs, movies, books, and television. For the last 10 years I have rarely seen other humans, much less engage in conversation and it appears my communication skills are somewhat rusty. Therefore, I shall refrain from commenting but would still appreciate reading others comments if there are no objections. Thank you.

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Sorry for being a little slow but I get the point. The title of the forum is Rich, Young, and Pretty and comments should be directed specifically towards this film. My apologies. I am new to forums, much less actually voicing my opinion in a public fashion. Being disabled, my life pretty much revolves around my twin dogs, movies, books, and television. For the last 10 years I have rarely seen other humans, much less engage in conversation and it appears my communication skills are somewhat rusty. Therefore, I shall refrain from commenting but would still appreciate reading others comments if there are no objections. Thank you.

 

I don't think you should refrain from sharing your ideas in these forums. I just fell that when you started bringing in references to the other films, you were actually forming a larger discussion about Jane Powell, instead of this specific movie.

 

If you're a fan of Powell, and it sounds like you are, then please make a separate thread about her. I am sure plenty of people would like to turn the spotlight on her as a performer. She's wonderful.

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