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High Society (1956)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 17 July 1956 (USA)
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4:01 | Trailer
A spoiled heiress must choose among three suitors: her jazz musician ex-husband, a stuffy businessman, and an undercover tabloid reporter.

Director:

Charles Walters

Writers:

John Patrick (screenplay), Philip Barry (play)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bing Crosby ... C. K. Dexter-Haven
Grace Kelly ... Tracy Lord
Frank Sinatra ... Mike Connor
Celeste Holm ... Liz Imbrie
John Lund ... George Kittredge
Louis Calhern ... Uncle Willie
Sidney Blackmer ... Seth Lord
Louis Armstrong ... Louis Armstrong
Margalo Gillmore ... Mrs. Seth Lord
Lydia Reed ... Caroline Lord
Gordon Richards Gordon Richards ... Dexter-Haven's Butler
Richard Garrick ... Lords' Butler
Louis Armstrong and His Band Louis Armstrong and His Band ... Themselves
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Storyline

C.K. Dexter-Haven, a successful popular jazz musician, lives in a mansion near his ex-wife's Tracy Lord's family estate. She is on the verge of marrying a man blander and safer than Dex, who tries to win Tracy's heart again. Mike Connor, an undercover tabloid reporter, also falls for Tracy while covering the nuptials for Spy magazine. Tracy must choose between the three men as she discovers that "safe" can mean "deadly dull" when it comes to husbands and life. Written by James Meek <james@oz.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They're all together for the first time! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 July 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alta sociedad See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,700,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Perspecta Stereo (as Perspecta Sound®) (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A different lion was used for the opening MGM Logal See more »

Goofs

When Tracy comes up from below deck in the "True Love" flashback scene, she is wearing blue tennis shoes. Although the dialogue is continuous, she is barefoot in the very next shot, then the shoes appear again, though we never see her take them off (or on). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Louis Armstrong: [after singing the opening song with his band] End of song, beginning of story.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits Louis Armstrong and His Band are eighth-billed, but in the end credits cast list it is Louis Armstrong listed individually who is eighth-billed. See more »

Connections

Featured in TCM Guest Programmer: Regis Philbin (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

True Love
(uncredited)
Written by Cole Porter
Sung by Bing Crosby and Grace Kelly
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Mildy Pleasant Musical Remake Of A Classic Film
21 April 2005 | by gftbiloxiSee all my reviews

Tracy Lord is a society woman with an inflexible sense of propriety: not only has she divorced her socially liberal first husband C.K. Dexter-Haven, she has forced her mother to separate from her father over the latter's questionable behavior with a chorus girl. Now she plans to marry George Kittredge, a social climber with a sense of propriety as inflexible as her own--only to find her wedding suddenly beset by her first husband, two pesky reporters, the possibility of a paternal scandal, and a local jazz fest.

If all this sounds a bit familiar, it should be no surprise. Originally written for the stage by Philip Barry under the title THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, it proved a smash hit during the 1940s on both stage and screen, and this remake follows the original very closely, only fiddling with the story and characters to the extent of introducing and rationalizing Cole Porter's musical elements.

The original non-musical film cast included Katherine Hepburn, Cary Grant, and James Stewart--a hard act to follow, to say the least. But while they don't best that teaming, stars Grace Kelly (Tracy), Bing Crosby (C.K. Dexter-Haven), and Frank Sinatra (Mike Connor, one of the reporters) carry off the roles with considerable charm. But the real strength of this film is the guest appearance of Louis Armstrong and the Cole Porter score. Only Porter would be brazen enough to write lyrics that rhyme Circe with Mercy, and while this is one of his lesser efforts it is still pretty impressive stuff, including such memorable tunes as "True Love," the satirical "Well, Did You Ever?," and such throw-away charmers as "Little One." As for Louis Armstrong, his star quality is powerful enough to put even Sinatra in the shade.

The failure of the film is the fact that every one in the cast seems to play a bit too casually, and although they are all clearly having a good time they never really achieve the sparkle a truly great musical comedy requires. Even so, musical fans--particularly those of Cole Porter, Armstrong, Crosby, and Sinatra--will find it quite enjoyable, and Grace Kelly fans will find the actress as lovely as ever. Recommended.

Gary F. Taylor, aka GFT, Amazon Reviewer


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