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Does THE HARVEY GIRLS Have A ...


Palmerin
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Sounds like a great idea for a thread called 'Plotless movies.' :)

 

Yes,  that would be an interesting thread but few movies would really qualify.   But many would for having a weak plot.

 

As for Harvey Girls;  To me the movie has a more solid plot than most musicals.  A while back I stated that musicals plots were like porn film plots;  get the plot out of the way and get to the action (in the case of a musical,  a musical scene of course).

 

But Harvey Girls has a few storylines going on;  One is the Harvey Girls and their overall story based on the actual Fred Harvey Company.    Of course than we have the old type of love story where the two stars don't like each other at first and the guy starts off appearing to be a real bad guy but doing good by the end along with the 3rd wheel gal from the other side of the tracks (Lansbury) ; The who runs this town contest between men (yea, this plot was used way too often especially in westerns).

 

So more storylines than other musicals I have seen (as well as westerns). 

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Why do you like...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TEASER THREAD TITLES?

 

I remember a poster of long, long, ago who was very well-spoken and intelligent, her screen name was therealfuster which might ring a bell or two with true veterans of TCM lore, who had the habit of just start writing with no actual thread title. This present thread leaves out the last word in an attempt to create at an impact of a sort, but therealfuster made no such attempt, not really ...

 

For instance, if therealfuster were to create a thread with this post I'm writing now, then the thread title might read ...

 

I remember a poster of long ...

 

...and then you would be even more in dark. It was a teaser too, but not borne out of the need for drama; no, it seemed to come from sheer laziness of taking the time to think of a title.

 

I called her on this (nicely) saying that it would be nice to give it a proper title so that the title reflects more accurately the actual subject matter. I can't remember if my request was ever acknowledged. Her threads are still in the archives but you have to go back to '03 or '04. They were good threads though, she was knowledgeable, intelligent, and a good writer.

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Yes. The Harvey Girls has a plot.

 

Judy Garland is traveling to Arizona (via train) after having answered a man's "lonely hearts ad." After answering his ad, the man sends her some beautifully written letters. Having fallen in love with him, Garland travels to AZ to marry him. Enroute to the Southwest, Garland meets a group of "Harvey Girls," a group of waitresses who have been hired to work at Fred Harvey's "The Harvey House Restaurant." When Judy arrives in AZ, she finds out that the man who she was hoping to marry is an old man who works as a cowhand. She finds out that the local (male) proprietor (John Hodiak) of the nearby saloon is the man who actually wrote the letters. Of course, Garland is mad and tells off Hodiak and of course, instead of taking a hint and leaving her alone, Hodiak is smitten. Garland of course, does not reciprocate.

 

Meanwhile, Hodiak's business associate (Preston Foster) at the saloon does not like how "The Harvey Girls" are taking business away from his saloon. He tries multiple times to scare off "The Harvey Girls." Angela Lansbury, a dance hall girl (and possibly "lady of the night") who is in love with Hodiak sees Garland as a rival for his affections and treats her very nastily throughout much of the film. Hodiak tries to get his associate to leave The Harvey Girls alone, but Foster continues to try and intimidate them into leaving, with his attempts culminating in burning down The Harvey Girls' restaurant. Hodiak, wanting to do the right thing, offers his saloon as a replacement for The Harvey House. Foster, Lansbury and the rest of the saloon girls leave town.

 

Since this is a romantic film as well, we have the typical storyline of the girl and boy disliking each other (or one harboring a crush with the other not reciprocating), throughout the film, Garland slowly comes to like Hodiak despite being angry with him at the beginning of the film. At the end of the film, thinking that Hodiak has boarded the train with the remainder of his saloon associates, Garland boards the train. Lansbury, realizing how much Garland likes Hodiak, plays the nice girl for once in the film, stops the train and points out to Garland that Hodiak is outside the train on a horse, riding toward them. Garland gets off the train.

 

...And they lived happily ever after...

 

If you don't like musicals or somewhat predictable plots, then this isn't the film for you, but anyone who is a fan of Garland (or one of the other cast members) will enjoy this film. It has Garland's famous "On the Atchinson, Topeka and the Santa Fe" song.

 

I really like this movie, but I also like musicals and Judy Garland.

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If we ever have to elect a principal plot synopses writer, I nominate you. Nicely done. The Harvey Girls does seem to have a plot (of sorts, to which you allude) Angela Lansbury actually did that? Who d'a thunk it? I haven't seen this film and let's face it, probably never will. But I do like Miss Judy. It might be worth watching just to see Angela be nice. I'll keep an eye on the schedule and put it on the DVR. Maybe I'll make a mistake and watch it. 

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A few additions:

 

"On the Atchison, Topeka & the Santa Fe" won the "Best Song" Oscar in 1946--Virginia O'Brien (an MGM 1940's comic) has a number called "The Wild, Wild, West" which is maybe the funniest part of the movie--watch for Cyd Charisse in a small part--watch & listen for Kenny Baker (starred in 1939's "The Mikado", which was shown yesterday a.m. (he's introduced  tenor voice first).  Very pleasant 1940's MGM  A musical (meaning MGM spent major money on it, & it all showed on screen)  , with better music & a strong factual basis, as jamesjazzguitar noted.  Read the credits, if they aren't chopped off--they include a Thank You to the Fred Harvey Co.  :)

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