Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Meet Me in St. Louis Review















Meet Me in St. Louis


Release Date: 12th July 1945 - Australia


Production Companies
Metro Goldwyn Mayer


Genre: Musical

Rating: G

Runtime: 108 minutes


Budget: $1,885,000

Box Office Gross: $12,800,000 
(Worldwide)


Plot Summary
St. Louis 1903. The well-
off Smith family has four 
daughters, including 
Esther and little Tootie. 
Seventeen year old Esther has 
fallen in love with the boy 
next door who has just 
moved in - John. He 
however, barely notices 
her at first. The family is 
shocked when Mr. Smith 
reveals he has been 
transferred to a nice 
position in New York, 
which means the family 
has to leave St. Louis 
and not attend the St. Louis Fair.


Cast
Judy Garland - Esther Smith
Margaret O'Brien - 'Tootie' Smith
Leon Ames - Alonzo Smith
Mary Astor - Anna Smith
Lucille Bremer - Rose Smith
Tom Drake - John Truett
Marjorie Main - Katie 
Harry Davenport - Grandpa
Henry H. Daniels Jr. - Lon Smith
Joan Carroll - Agnes Smith
June Lockhart - Lucille Ballard
Robert Sully - Warren Sheffield
Hugh Marlowe - Colonel Marly
Chill Wills - Mr. Neely

Crew
Director - Vincente Minnelli
Based on the Book - Sally Benson
Screenplay - Irving Brecher,
Fred F. Finklehoffe, Victor 
Heerman (Uncredited), 
William Ludwig (Uncredited),
Sarah Y. Mason (Uncredited) 
and Doris Gilver (Uncredited)
Producer - Arthur Freed
Associate Producer/Music (Uncredited)/Musical Adaptation - Roger Edens
Art Directors - Lemuel Ayers, Cedric Gibbons and Jack Martin Smith
Costume Designer - Irene Scharaff
Makeup Creator - Jack Dawn
Director of Photography - George J. Folsey
Dance Director - Charles Walters
Songs & Lyrics - Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane
Film Editor - Albert Akst
Music (Uncredited)/Orchestrator - Conrad Salinger


Awards

1945 Academy Awards
Juvenile Award - Margaret O'Brien (Won)
-------------------------------
Best Writing, Screenplay - Irving Brecher and Fred F. Finklehoffe (Nominated)
Best Cinematography, Color - George J. Folsey (Nominated) 
Best Music, Scoring of a
Motion Picture - George Stoll (Nominated)
Best Music, Original Song
"The Trolley Song" - Ralph Martin and Hugh Blaine (Nominated)


Review
A charming and entertaining vintage musical for a film of its age, hasn't lessened a bit since its release in 1944. MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS was produced when war was nearing its end and probably a huge step-up to those old time MGM musicals that were on a successful period around the 40s and early 50s. The movie of this direction was all thanks to producer Arthur Freed and director Vincente Minnelli who both made this as more sincere effort for its main star Judy Garland who used to play a country girl out of Kansas City in THE WIZARD OF OZ (click here). She has matured since then and plays her part as the leading lady well, adding a refined elegance to the film. I'm still not a huge fan of her other talents including her music. The movie does have its magical moments with such songs, as the catchy melody of the "Trolley Song" and the melancholy "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" - have remained as timeless and remembered tunes in history.

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS is probably not a favourite movie of mine, but it's a great musical that I must see again. Who knows, maybe in the future you might like to see its cinematic version or if you prefer a live stage production of the film adaptation.

Star rating: (8/10) Very Good Movie


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