My Day at the Movies: Holiday Inn
With the holidays amping up and my personal world less than settled, I’m feeling a little less than jolly this season. To cheer myself up I headed to the one place that has always been magical for me, the movies. There’s something healing about the silver screen. Which is why I was delighted to find that Holiday Inn was playing at our local theatre in it’s original black and white.
This movie has become one of my holiday must see’s over the years. Watching the smooth Fred Astaire glide his way across the dance floor with masterful movements while playing the heel instantly makes me smile. And Bing’s voice is one of the few that can bring a tear to my eye. Match that with some masterful dancing and singing from the female leads, Marjorie Reynolds and Virginia Dale and it’s no surprise why this classic has such a key place in my heart.
Back to the magical part of it all, more than what you see on screen, there’s something amazing about going to the theatre. You join with dozens of others to share in a passive experience together laughing and crying while being told a tale. In that darkened climate controlled room you can allow the concerns and stress of the day slip away and for a short while immerse yourself into another world. When that movie is in it’s original black and white, from a time when WW2 was in full swing, you can easily forget that you are in the 21st century.
The storyline centers around a crooner (played by Bing Crosby) and his hoofer partner (played by Fred Astaire). It opens with them falling out over their other costar (played by Virginia Dale). After losing his girl to his partner, Bing’s character decides to open an Inn that is solely open during the holidays, which gives him the added bonus of only working 15 days a year. Sounds ideal doesn’t it. It would be until he falls in love with his new co-star and his hoofer partner loses his girl and in a twist of fate falls in love with the same girl as the crooner.
The rest of the story gives you laughs, tears and of course it has out of date scenes. Black face is used and Marjorie Reynold’s character is dressed up in a poor black face disguise. That same routine also has his house maid (not to be confused as a slave) singing to her children about how Abe Lincoln set the darkies free.
Aside from that and the flippant attitude towards engagements, the movie was a delight and gave us the memorable scene where Bing’s character introduces Linda (played by Marjorie Reynolds) to the now infamous song White Christmas.
Overall, the movie and experience was a lovely way to spend a Sunday afternoon and left me hoping they do more classic movies. White Christmas would be a fantastic follow up film.
Until next time, make do and mend.