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Friday, September 27, 2013

Carnival In Costa Rica (1947)

As an arranged marriage is prepared between two Costa Rican families, the intended groom (Cesar Romero) arrives home with an American girlfriend (Celeste Holm) while the intended bride (Vera-Ellen) finds herself attracted to an American coffee buyer (Dick Haymes). With the exception of Rodgers and Hammerstein's STATE FAIR (1945), 20th Century Fox never had much luck with their forties musicals. They were usually colorful, often gaudy, Technicolor musicals set in Argentina, Rio or Havana; this time it was Costa Rica's turn. Not a memorable song in the bunch (music by Ernesto Lecuona, lyrics by Harry Ruby), not even a decent dance number unless you count Vera-Ellen's twirling and bouncing. Just the usual romantic mix ups and misunderstandings till the "they all lived happily ever after" wrap up. The appeal of the crooner Haymes, so popular at the time, is lost on me and Holm is miscast as a ditzy blonde. Directed by Gregory Ratoff (1939's INTERMEZZO). With Anne Revere (wasted), J. Carrol Naish, Barbara Whiting and Nestor Paiva.

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