Sunday, November 13, 2011

Film | Meet Me In St. Louis (1944)

This is another DVD I picked up a few years and have just gotten around to watching. I knew it was full of wonderful music and was going to be beautiful with his colorful wardrobes and sets, but I didn't expect to love it so much. I say that about almost every film, so don't mind me.


"A cast of favorites in the Charming . . .
Romantic . . . Tuneful Love Story
of the Early 1900s !"

Judy Garland as Esther Smith
Margaret O'Brien as "Tootie" Smith
Mary Astor as Mrs. Anna Smith
Lucille Bremer as Rose Smith
Tom Drake as John Truitt
Marjorie Main as Katie the maid
Leon Ames as Mr. Alonzo Smith

Judy Garland stars as Esther Smith, who just can't ignore the boy next door (Tom Drake), in director Vincente Minnelli's musical masterpiece about the trials and tribulations of a tight-knit family living in St. Louis on the eve of the 1904 World's Fair. Memorable characters and charming songs, which include "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "The Trolley Song," make this one of the greatest American musicals ever lensed. [Netflix]

This entire film was delightful to watch, but my favorite scene came toward the end of the film. When Tootie gets upset about leaving St. Louis, she storms outside to destroy her snowmen. Big sis Esther comes to her aid and we are treated to one of the most memorable performances ever. When Judy sings "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas", you are captivated. From the beautiful framing of Garland to her beautiful vibrato, you cant help but to tear up.

This film has been credited with kicking off the Golden Age of the MGM musical. It is considered of of the studio's signature films because of it's style and look. The success of this film started a wave of what are considered today as top rate musicals. Vincente Minnelli and Arthur Freed would follow Meet Me In St. Louis with such films as The Bandwagon (1953), Brigadoon (1954) and An American In Paris (1951).

At first Judy Garland was reluctant to play another teenage girl role, but I am sure her mind changed once she fell in love with director Vincente Minnelli. You can see the love that Minnelli had for Judy through the way he framed her in every one of her scenes. Never has a film captured her beauty more than this one.

I am not sure what else needs to be said about this film. The beautiful colors, sets, costumes and of course the music make this a wonderful film. If you are a fan of Judy Garland, musicals, or just a fan of great cinema... make sure this is on your list of films to see.


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