Where Music & Dance Fall Face First Into The Internet

Friday, October 8, 2010

Young Man With A Horn (1950)

Nothing about this film really grabbed me. The story was based on a true story, but that didn't make it all that new or entertaining. Young musician falls in love with music & has an great mentor. Falls in love with wrong girl & mentor dies after an some unkind things are said. Musician goes into a horrible tailspin. Musician is saved by a friend & another girl, then regains form...the end. I'm sure it was more 'fresh' back in 1950, but it still didn't really work for me.

It stars Kirk Douglas, Doris Day & Lauren Bacall. Doris plays the sweet & caring role she normally gets, and does a fine job. Lauren's character is so annoying that it puts me off any time she is on screen. Kirk does a pretty good job, but his character is even more annoying than Lauren's whenever they share screen time. He's totally blinded & whipped...nothing worse than a pussy whipped man.

The only supporting actors worth mentioning would be Juano Hernandez (plays the mentor) & Hoagy Carmichael (plays Kirk's friend & acts as the narrator). Both give really good performances...probably better than the leads. I'll embed a few of the musical number I liked below, but the most entertaining part of the movie was reading the IMDb trivia....which I'll include below the videos.

I May Be Wrong (But I Think You're Wonderful) by Doris Day

The Very Thought Of You Sung by Doris Day with Harry James on trumpet

Get Happy Played by Hoagy Carmichael & Harry James

Fun Facts:
Doris Day wrote that she was unhappy making this film, which brought back stressful memories of her early career as a band singer, and also because Kirk Douglas and Lauren Bacall seemed to intentionally shut her out, making her feel unwelcome.

Kirk Douglas's trumpet licks were performed by Harry James.

Even while married to pinup-girl Betty Grable, Harry James was notorious for his womanizing. Peter Levinson, in his biography of James ("Trumpet Blues") notes that during the filming of this movie, James contacted Doris Day's manager to ask what he thought were James' chances of "nailing" Doris. - IMDb
Lauren Bacall & Kirk Douglas did have a relationship prior to the making of this movie. Lauren is in large part responsible for Kirk's break into Hollywood.

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