In his last screen appearance, bandleader Glenn Miller plays--are you sitting down?--a bandleader. The film's main plot involves small-town girl Ann Rutherford, who impulsively marries George Montgomery, a trumpeter in the Miller band. Rutherford soon finds that she isn't particularly suited for life on the road, nor is she prepared for the petty jealousies and backstabbings prevalent among the other orchestra wives (Lynn Bari, Carole Landis et. al.) She eventually leaves Montgomery, an event which coincides with the breakup of the band. But both the band and the marriage are salvaged through the benign conspiratorial schemes of Glenn Miller and a repentant Rutherford. Those who aren't interested in the various plots and subplots in Orchestra Wives will be captivated by the endless supply of blue-ribbon tunes, including I Got a Gal in Kalamazoo, At Last, and Serenade in Blue. Guest stars include Tex Beneke, The Modernaires and the Nicholas Brothers. Watch for an uncredited Jackie Gleason as a bass player and Dale Evans as Ann Rutherford's friend in the soda-fountain scene. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
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If you like the older movies you'd like this one, and it has some terrific actors. It gives you the reality of life in the competive music business back then. I was amazed at the artistry. I liked the creative twist at the end too. Try it.
This was a pleasant trip to yesteryear for lovers of the big band sound. The conflict between the players' wives served as glue to create some semblance of plot to hold the movie together, but the music is the focus. A surprise awaits in the form of the Nicholas Brothers, who could have given Fred Astaire a run for his money had they danced in one of his movies. For simple entertainment, this was an enjoyable way to spend 97 minutes.
Fans of the Big Band sound will be interested in this typical wisecracking fluffy comedy from 1942. It features one of only two film roles by the legendary Glenn Miller. There are lots of fimiliar Hollywood faces in a story about catty orchestra wives except for sweet, innocent Ann Rutherford. Great tunes and lots of style abound. The disc includes commentary by Ann and one of the Nicholas Bros. which give fascinating insights into the making of the movie and the era.