This is the musical biopic that won James Cagney his only Oscar. And IMHO, he certainly deserved it. His performance, especially his dancing, was letter perfect. WB originally wanted Fred Astaire for the lead role of theater entrepreneur and entertainer George M. Cohan. While I have the deepest respect for Mr. A's talent, Cagney was really better suited for the role, personality wise.
The movie did take a few liberties with facts--for example, George M. was not born on the Fourth of July, but on the day before. And the play I'd Rather Be Right was in 1937, so there was no mention of Hitler or the Japanese. However, I just love the lyric, "We'll take it (France) back from Hitler and put ants in his Japants..."; it was really funny.
In later years, particularly during the 1960's and '70's, the movie was termed "jingoistic". But these critics failed to realize that in 1942, America was in the midst of WWII, and anything patriotic was certainly welcome. And the film did pass over certain unpleasant aspects of Cohan's life and career, such as his vociferous objection to the formation of Actors' Equity.
TCM airs this classic every Fourth of July, and might also be shown during "31 Days of Oscar".
Post by Primemovermithrax Pejorative on Jan 12, 2020 2:07:06 GMT
Ha I did a school essay on Michael Curtiz films so this was one of the ones I concentrated on. I had to get it on VHS from a local store.
"Learn from me, if not by my precepts, at least by my example, how dangerous is the acquirement of knowledge and how much happier that man is who believes his native town to be the world, than he who aspires to become greater than his nature will allow." Frankenstein