Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.
Thursday, August 24, 2017
HIT THE DECK
Young sailor Danny (Russ Tamblyn of Follow the Boys) is the son of rear admiral Smith (Walter Pidgeon). When Danny thinks that his sister, Susan (Jane Powell), a show business aspirant, may be taken advantage of by theater star Wendell Craig (Gene Raymond), he and his Navy buddies Rico (Vic Damone of Athena) and Bill (Tony Martin) break into his apartment where he sits with Susan and assault him. Their stupid actions result in the sailors being chased all over Manhattan by the shore patrol (including Alan King in an early role). Meanwhile Danny falls for Carol (Debbie Reynolds), who appears in Craig's show, and Ginger (Ann Miller) despairs that long-time fiance Bill will ever marry her. Rico's mother (Kay Armen of Hey Let's Twist) finds that her fiance, Peroni (J, Carrol Naish), may find her too old when he sees she's got a grown son. The "plot" is just an excuse to hang some songs and dance numbers on, so we've got Powell doing the snappy "Sometimes I Love You," Armen and the cast doing "Sing, Hallelujah!" and other numbers. Miller is typically saucy, Martin and Powell can sing, but Naish, Armen, and especially Gene Raymond make the best impressions. The silly picture aspires to funniness but never quite gets there.
Verdict: More widescreen Technicolor twaddle. **.