Song of the Day #4,443: ‘You’re Awful’ – Frank Sinatra and Betty Garrett

Continuing my personal ranking of the 25 movie musicals deemed essential by the American Film Institute…

#11. On the Town – 1949
(#19 on the AFI list)

On the Town… also known as the movie where a 34-year-old Frank Sinatra pretends he has never been to New York.

The directorial debut of Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen, this film is an adaptation of the stage musical of the same name. Kelly, Sinatra and Jules Munshin play three sailors on a day of shore leave in the Big Apple, and Betty Garrett, Ann Miller and Vera-Ellen play their love interests.

Leonard Bernstein wrote the music for the stage musical, but many of his songs were scrapped for this film version, replaced by new tunes written by Roger Edens. Bernstein boycotted the film as a result.

Kelly and Donen opted to film several scenes on location in New York City, despite the availability of elaborate “New York” backlots at MGM. Their biggest challenge was dealing with crowds of Sinatra fans.

What I loved best about this movie was the attention given to the female characters. These smart, funny, talented women match their male counterparts beat for beat, turning this into a thoroughly entertaining triple date.

On the Town was nominated for (and won) a single Oscar, for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture.

5 thoughts on “Song of the Day #4,443: ‘You’re Awful’ – Frank Sinatra and Betty Garrett

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    Seems as though you considered this movie awful…..awfully good. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.😜)

  2. Peg says:

    Sinatra sounds wonderful. I remember watching this movie after Sinatra died as a celebration of his life. Don’t know this song though. Wonder what the original songs were by Bernstein.

  3. Amy says:

    Where were you able to find this one, as I want to check it out! 🙂

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