Summer Holiday (1948 film)
Australian theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Rouben Mamoulian|
|Produced by||Arthur Freed|
|Written by||Eugene O'Neill (play)|
|Edited by||Albert Akst|
|April 16, 1948|
Summer Holiday is a 1948 American musical comedy film directed by Rouben Mamoulian and starring Mickey Rooney and Gloria DeHaven. The picture is based on the play Ah, Wilderness! (1933) by Eugene O'Neill, which had been filmed as under that name by MGM in 1935 with Rooney in a much smaller role. Though completed in October 1946, the film sat on the shelf until 1948.
In addition to Walter Huston, the supporting cast features Frank Morgan as the drunken Uncle Sid, portrayed earlier by Wallace Beery on screen and later by Jackie Gleason on Broadway, as well as Marilyn Maxwell, Agnes Moorehead, Selena Royle and Anne Francis. It is unusual in that most of the dialogue is sung. It is one of the famous Arthur Freed production musicals of MGM. It has beautiful costumes and colorful cinematography.
Most of the dialogue in this film is sung, with music provided by Ralph Baline and Harry Warren. The movie takes place in a Connecticut town at the turn of the century. It centers around a young man, Richard Miller (Mickey Rooney) who is about to graduate high school and step into the world of adults. He has a cynical view of the world because of all the books he has been reading. He has a girlfriend Muriel (Gloria DeHaven) whom he loves very much but she is afraid of being kissed. His father Mr. Miller (Walter Huston) is editor of the town newspaper. He has three other siblings and the youngest Tommy, (Butch Jenkins) is very mischievous, setting off fire crackers on the 4th of July after people. Living with his family are also his Uncle Sid (Frank Morgan) and Cousin Lily (Agnes Moorehead) who are usually on the verge of getting engaged but the uncle's drinking gets in the way. Richard attempts to give a revolutionary speech during graduation but his notes fall out. On the 4th of July everyone in town sets out to celebrate. The men go on a men's picnic so that they can drink beer freely. The women go on a women's picnic where they play croquet and eat what they have cooked. The kids swim at the pond and the young couples sing and dance. This is where Muriel's father sees that Richard tries to kiss her and he goes to complain and threaten Mr. Miller. They argue and he leaves but he leaves a farewell letter from Muriel to Richard. When he reads it, he is devastated and angry and later decides to leave the house. As he does his older brother's friend invites him on a double date. It turns out that it is a date with a couple of dance hall girls. His girl (Marilyn Maxwell) takes him to a bar to drink. He gets drunk and starts talking about his ideas. She gets fed up with him when she sees another guy. So he gets thrown out. The bartender realizing that the boy is the son of a newspaper owner and could run him out of town, throws out the girl. The next day, she reports the bartender to his father for serving alcohol to an underage boy. Meanwhile, Muriel finally finds a way to send a note of apology to Richard saying she will always love him. They meet in the park and finally kiss. His outlook on the future is now brighter and happier. The end.
- Mickey Rooney as Richard Miller
- Gloria DeHaven as Muriel
- Walter Huston as Nat Miller
- Frank Morgan as Uncle Sid
- Jackie 'Butch' Jenkins as Tommy
- Marilyn Maxwell as Belle
- Agnes Moorehead as Cousin Lily
- Selena Royle as Mrs. Miller
- Michael Kirby as Arthur Miller
- Shirley Johns as Mildred
- Hal Hackett as Wint
- Anne Francis as Elsie Rand
- John Alexander as Mr. McComber
- Virginia Brissac as Miss Hawley
- Howard Freeman as Mr. Peabody
- Emory Parnell as Dannville Beach Club Bartender
- The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study.
- Another source puts the cost at $2 million Variety February 1948
- Scott Eyman, Lion of Hollywood: The Life and Legend of Louis B. Mayer, Robson, 2005 p 401
- "Top Grossers of 1948", Variety 5 January 1949 p 46