6.9/10
4,485
62 user 16 critic

Show Boat (1951)

Approved | | Drama, Family, Musical | 24 September 1951 (USA)
Trailer
4:02 | Trailer
The daughter of a riverboat captain falls in love with a charming gambler, but their fairytale romance is threatened when his luck turns sour.

Director:

George Sidney

Writers:

John Lee Mahin (screen play), Jerome Kern (based on the immortal musical play "Show Boat" by) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kathryn Grayson ... Magnolia Hawks
Ava Gardner ... Julie LaVerne
Howard Keel ... Gaylord Ravenal
Joe E. Brown ... Cap'n Andy Hawks
Marge Champion ... Ellie May Shipley
Gower Champion ... Frank Schultz
Robert Sterling ... Steven Baker
Agnes Moorehead ... Parthy Hawks
Leif Erickson ... Pete (as Lief Erickson)
William Warfield ... Joe
Edit

Storyline

The "Cotton Blossom", owned by the Hawk family, is the show boat everyone goes to for great musical entertainment down south. Julie LaVerne and her husband are the stars of the show. After a someone tells the local police that Julie (who's half- African-American) is married to a white man, they are forced to leave the show boat because interracial marriages are forbidden. Magnolia Hawk, Captain Andy Hawks' daughter, becomes the new show boat attraction, and her leading man is Gaylord Ravenal, a gambler. The two instantly fall in love, and marry without Parthy Hawks approval. Magnolia and Gaylord leave the "Cotton Blossom" for a whirl-wind honeymoon. Soon after, Magnolia realizes that gambling means more to Gaylord than anything else. Magnolia confronts Gaylord, and after he gambles away their fortune he leaves her, not knowing she is pregnant. Magnolia, penniless and pregnant, and is left to fend for herself, and make a new start. Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Hundreds In The Cast! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The original production of Showboat opened in the Ziegfeld Theater on December 27, 1927 and ran for 572 performances. See more »

Goofs

At one point, Magnolia (Kathryn Grayson) refers to Lady Southweight and Hamilton Barsdale as being characters in "Tempest and Sunshine", a melodrama adapted from a then-popular novel. There are no such characters in that play. In the scene in which Cap'n Andy (Joe E. Brown) introduces the show boat actors to the crowd, Julie (Ava Gardner) and Steve (Robert Sterling) make another reference to Hamilton, and Cap'n Andy then says: "You have to see the play tonight folks, to learn their secret - "Tempest and Sunshine", beautiful drama of tears and laughter". See more »

Quotes

Ellie May Shipley: [singing] I admit it's fun, To smear my face with paint, Causing everyone, To think I'm what I ain't...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Jerome Kern is never specifically credited for having composed the music. His and Oscar Hammerstein II's joint screen credit reads: "Based on the Immortal Musical Play 'Show Boat' by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II'", although Kern wrote only the music. See more »

Alternate Versions

Early preview showings of this film featured Ava Gardner's own singing voice, before the film was officially released with Ava overdubbed by Annette Warren. See more »

Connections

Referenced in MGM Parade: Episode #1.14 (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

Montage: Make Believe
(reprise)
Music by Jerome Kern
Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II
Sung by MGM chorus during first montage sequence
See more »

User Reviews

 
Forget the story, enjoy the singing...
26 January 2007 | by neilmacSee all my reviews

Don't worry about comparisons with the original, supposedly weak story line, etc, etc - just suspend belief and enjoy it as a musical.

The key vocalists are absolutely first rate: Howard Keel, Kathryn Grayson and William Warfield were at the tops of their games here. The superb, effortless vocals from Keel and Grayson are lessons on how to sing - you'll never hear 'Make Believe' sung better than this.

William Warfield's version of 'Old Man River' is just magic. People usually talk about Paul Robson in the same breath as 'Old Man River' but none of Robson's renditions can match this performance. Warfield is a true bass (Robson was a bass-baritone) and delivers this song with magnificent power and resonance. Warfield is The Man.

Sit back and enjoy the music...


15 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 62 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 September 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Show Boat See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$2,295,429 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed