In a fit of pique when Ann Miller dumps him as both dance partner and boyfriend, FredAstaire declares that he can find a new partner out of the first girl he sees, and he happens to pickbar singer Judy Garland. She turns out, of course, to be exactly the partner he should have had allalong, as they rise to fame.
Plot, in the case of this musical, is pretty much irrelevant — but hell, they have to squeeze 17songs into a mere 103 minutes. There are plenty of favourit…s here (including the title song), andalso an oddity: Peter Lawford attempting to sing “The Fella with the Umbrella.” It’s all verycheerful and sunny, and a fine example of the musical at its peak.
Famous this musical might be, but presumably not famous enough to warrant the 5.1 remixtreatment given the likes of Singin’ in the Rain and Meet Me In St. Louis.Nothing but the original mono here, but, it’s nice and clean, with only very minor and occasionalbuzz or hiss.
The colours are prone to slight fluctuation, but nothing severe. The same is true for the grain:it’s there, but it isn’t a major problem (particularly not for a film with a 1948 vintage). Thecolours are consistently bright, fortunately, and the image is decently sharp.
The image accompanying this review is for a 2-disc set, but what is under review here is asingle-disc offering, which appears to have all but one of the features. The commentary by AvaAstaire McKenzie (Fred’s daughter) and Judy Garland biographer John Fricke is excellent, farbetter than the one on the new disc for The Band Wagon. There’s a fairly typicallyenthusiastic documentary called “Easter Parade: On the Avenue,” an outtake of Judy Garlandperforming “Mr. Monotony” (unaccountably presented in anamorphic fullscreen when nothingelse on the disc is), the theatrical trailer, and a radio adaptation of the film (with very waverysound), plus a radio promo for the movie. The menu’s main screen is animated and scored.
Classic songs, and a fine old time, though this isn’t the absolute top of the heap as far asclassic musicals go.
Special Features List
- Audio Commentary
- “Easter Parade: On the Avenue” Documetnary
- Outtake Musical Number
- Radio Adaptation
- Radio Promo
- Theatrical Trailer