Writers Adolph and Betty Comden completely rewrite an old 1930’s stage hit and in the hands of director Vincente Minnelli it’s turned into what many critics consider to be one of the quintessential MGM musicals. Marvelous technicolor sets are steeped in 1950’s modernism yet the song & dance numbers are charmingly old-fashioned from the now iconic “That’s Entertainment!” to the pure country corn of “Louisiana Hayride”. But the show belongs to Fred Astaire and Cyd Charisse who seem to float on air as they swirl and swing across the stage beginning with a fanciful pas de deux in Central Park and ending in a rather odd but watchable jazz number about a Manhattan murder mystery. The rest of the cast perform admirably and despite a forced love interest between its two stars the film still gives off enough sparks to assuage all but the most cynical of viewers.

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