Broadway Rhythm (1944), starring George Murphy, Ginny Simms, Charles Winninger, Gloria DeHaven,
Review of Broadway Rhythm
In short, Broadway Rhythm is a very enjoyable musical. It’s not the equal of Top Hat or some of the other great musicals — but it’s not trying to be. It’s a musical about a family of performers. The son has made it big — possibly too big for his britches. He’s chasing a girl who would be perfect for his play. A play that she’s not interested in. His father’s retired, although the father doesn’t think that he’s ready to be put out to pasture. And the younger sister is attending college, when she wants to be performing.
The son’s play is too artsy, without the humor, warmth, etc. that made the family famous. And the girlfriend sees that, though he doesn’t. She suggests putting on the father’s “old-fashioned” play. And much of the musical is the different acts auditioning and rehearsing, and each act is very enjoyable. But it’s the family drama that holds it all together.
In short, Broadway Rhythm is both an enjoyable musical, and a drama about family. I recommend it.
The cast in Broadway Rhythm
- Jonnie Demming (George Murphy, For Me and My Gal). The son, who’s definitely talented and accomplished. And with a swollen head, and an exaggerated ego. Who wants to put on an “artsy” show that nobody would want to see.
- Helen Hoyt (Ginny Simms, Hit the Ice). The lovely young actress that Jonnie wants in his play … and begins to fall in love with. She begins to care for him as well. That’s why she joins his father in his rival play, to “shock” him back to his senses.
- Sam Demming (Charles Winninger, Beyond Tomorrow). Jonnie’s father, who feels that he’s been put out to pasture prematurely. And he’s clearly right. He’s trying to gently nudge in the right direction … And then he outright pushes by putting on the “old fashioned” play.
- Patsy Demming (Gloria DeHaven, Three Little Words). Jonnie’s younger sister (a very young Gloria DeHaven) doesn’t want to go back to college. She wants to be on the stage! Like her brother, and father. But over-protective Jonnie sends her back to college … Where they find the perfect place to put on Sam & Helen’s play.
- Fernway de la Fer (Lena Horne, I Dood It). A beautiful singer, who successfully auditions for the play. And is represented by …
- Eddie (Eddie ‘Rochester’ Anderson, The Jack Benny Program). Eddie begins as the butler to the Demming family, and after Fernway’s successful audition, he introduces himself as her “manager, financial manager, and spiritual advisor.” He does his typical, funny, performance.
Songs in Broadway Rhythm
- Somebody Loves Me
- Who’s Who?
- Solid Potato Salad
- Irresistible You
- Milkman, Keep Those Bottles Quiet
- I Love Corny Music
- What Do You Think I Am
- Brazilian Boogie
- Pretty Baby
- All The Things You Are
- Ida, Sweet as Apple Cider
- In Other Words, Seventeen
- That Lucky Fellow
- All in Fun
- National Emblem
- Oh, You Beautiful Doll
Editorial review of Broadway Rhythm courtesy of Amazon.com
Broadway producer Jonnie Demming is ready to out-razzle and out-dazzle ’em all with a new production that has everything – except the actress Jonnie knows is perfect for the lead. Future U.S. Senator George Murphy portrays Demming in a backstager drawn from the Jerome Kern-Oscar Hammerstein II musical Very Warm for May and co-starring Ginny Simms as the actress in Demming’s sights. But the film’s real story lies in its supporting acts: Tommy Dorsey leads the Big Band brass, Lena Horne sings an exotic Brazilian Boogie, Hazel Scott scorches the 88, the contortionist Ross Sisters defy human anatomy and Nancy Walker and Ben Blue add their clowning glory. Lots of romp and rhythm mark marvelous time in Broadway Rhythm!