Tom and Ellen Bowen are a brother and sister dance act whose show closes in New York. Their agent books them in London for the same period as the Royal Wedding. They travel by ship where Ellen meets and becomes involved with Lord John Brindale. This causes her to miss a rehearsal. Tom (Astaire) uses the time to dance with a hat rack and gym equipment. Later Tom and Ellen attempt a graceful dance number as the ship rolls. Upon arrival Tom holds auditions and meets Anne. There is much indecision by the siblings about their romantic partners even though they are in-the-clouds. Tom dances on the walls and ceiling of his hotel room. All ends well in this light musical. By the way, there is a vaudeville-style dance number in their show that features slapstick. It's a hoot.Written by
Originally envisioned as the first pairing of Fred Astaire and June Allyson, but Allyson left the project within weeks when she discovered she was pregnant. Garland was tapped as her replacement, but when she failed to appear for costume fittings, MGM finally severed her contract and Jane Powell (I) took over the role of Ellen Bowen. Ironically, towards the end of filming, Jane Powell also discovered she was pregnant. See more »
London streets have American fire hydrants. Also the same London bus drives backwards and forwards across the set. See more »
So, basically everybody around the globe knows- and has seen the famous dancing sequence with Fred Astaire dancing on the walls and ceilings. But how many people actually know that, that sequence is from this movie? I'm surprised that a movie with such a famous sequence isn't better known.
In essence "Royal Wedding" is your typical MGM musical, with still a couple of extra pluses, that makes this movie distinct itself from the average, formulaic movie musical, from the same time period. Obviously the famous sequence with Fred Astaire dancing on the ceiling is one of them but to me it also was the humor. Musicals really aren't best known for the well placed and original humor but this movie does a great job at providing a couple of genuine good and original laughs.
The story is kept simple and formulaic and above all also of course very predictable. The movie doesn't offer an awful lot of surprises but yet the story serves its purpose and that fits the genre just right.
There are a couple of great and likable characters in this movie, that help to make the movie an extra joy to watch. Fred Astaire of course steals the show with his acting and dancing but also Jane Powell as his sister was great. Not too happy about the casting of Sarah Churchill (Winston Churchill's daughter). No offense but she just isn't beautiful enough (she has got her daddy's looks, I'm afraid) for her part and also perhaps a tad too old. It just doesn't fit the genre.
The musical numbers are all well executed, mainly those by Fred Astaire. The sequences were however a bit too 'stagey' for my taste, although I should admit that the musical genre has just never been my favorite movie genre.
All in all an enjoyable to watch typical MGM musical, with a couple of more offerings in it than its fellow genre movies.
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