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joefilmone

Bizarre Production Numbers

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My favorites would be the one from The Gang's All Here with Carmen Miranda and the giant bananas and strawberries (I think it's called "The Lady in the Tutti-Frutti Hat"... and, of course, "Springtime for Hitler" from The Producers.

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There is always "The Inquisition" number from History of the World Part I.

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The Mel Brook numbers are suppose to be funny as oppose to the "Living Together, Growing Together" sequence from "Lost Horizon".

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Then there is the opening sequence to INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM with Kate Capshaw singing "Anything Goes" in Mandarin or whatever the language was.

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Which reminds me of Ginger Rogers singing We're in the Money (Ereway inhay the Oneymay), dressed only in large, strategically placed coinage, in Gold Diggers of 1933.

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Pretty much any of the numbers from the early Waner's musicals, like Gold Diggers of 1933 and 42nd Street. I love them, but they could never have appeared on a stage. Not even at Radio City Music Hall.

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And then there's the aquacade from Footlight Parade (not to mention those in several Esther Williams movies). Water shows onstage...

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"Sweet Marihuana"?! Now thats what I had in mind- a delirious piece of 30's movie musical lunacy!

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There's a bizarre yet fun number in The Dolly Sisters in which showgirls salute items from a make-up kit- Patty Powder etc. It is a bit like the Diamond Horseshoe bit where showgirls embody various condiments like mustard, ketchup etc...

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In you tube I ran across this army training film called " Personal Hygiene" which features several unexpected songs and ends with yes a big barn dance production number!

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In you tube I ran across this army training film called " Personal Hygiene" which features several unexpected songs and ends with yes a big barn dance production number!

 

Was it by any chance from the 40's or 50's? :)

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The finale from The Gang's All Here has always baffled me for its super colossal bad taste. It starts off alright with Alice Faye singing The Polka-Dot Polka, but then we get those cat like girls in spandex and their neon hula hoops and wafer like circles that become a bunch of disembodied heads of all of the film's stars reprising A Journey to a Star - most of them, badly!

 

I can't say I'm a big fan of 'It's Deductible' from My Blue Heaven with Betty Grable and Dan Dailey either. A song about personal income tax is just a silly idea.

 

Rhythm of the Day from Dancing Lady is just plain weird. We start off in the French Court of Louis XIV, migrate to an art deco Manhattan street, sneak inside a woman's spa where a bevy of beauties get naked behind a curtain and then are made over in cellophane wrap, and then dissolve to a truly mesmerizing deco carousel of pulsating light with Joan Crawford atop one of the horses. Just one of these images would have been enough to sustain the number. Thrust together as they are, they're just out of place and oh so trashy in a super kitsch sort of way.

 

The last bit of curiosity I never could get past (though I concede that the number itself is pretty good) is all those crystal chandeliers haphazardly tossed together in front of poor Susan Hayward at the start of her singing the title number from With A Song In My Heart. The chandeliers aren't strung nicely together, but layered on top of one another with a bit of transparent fabric woven between them in a sort of bargain basement 'two for one' or 'free to good home' ad from the classifieds. Thankfully Ms. Hayward moves away from them to do some high stepping elsewhere before too long.

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The finale from The Gang's All Here has always baffled me for its super colossal bad taste.

 

Well, personally I don't consider it to be in bad taste, at all. I know, it's just a matter of opinion, and different people will just see it differently. But I kinda like that they were OK with going way over the top and then some. And the most bizarre number in the movie, for my money, is the "Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat". B-)

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For bizarre production numbers one can find several in the 1929 feature "The Great Gabbo". Perhaps the most bizarre in that movie is the "Web Of Love" number.

NZ mentioned the "Rhythm Of The Day" number in "Dancing Lady" (1933). If one wants to see additional bizarreness the 1934 MGM short "The Big Idea" contains a segment from the "Rhythm Of The Day" number that was unused in "Dancing Lady".

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