Our Marithon continues with 1954’s There’s No Business Like Show Business, the story of a Vaudeville family-act called The Five Donahues – like the Osmonds but with Ethel Merman instead of being Mormon.
Walter Lang’s movie is essentially a string of elaborate song and dance numbers, just about held together by some plot about the youngest Donahue falling in love with Marilyn Monroe’s character – who’s so sexy and charismatic that you half expect the other four Donahues to do the same.
The other performances are a joy, particularly Airplane!‘s Ethel Merman and Singin’ in the Rain‘s Donald O’Connor – the most energetic man in show business. The non-story neatly resolves itself just in time for a show-stopping finale, and the film is a toe-tapping good time all round. While not nearly as funny as Gentlemen Prefer Blondes or Some Like It Hot, the movie whisks you along in its lavish set pieces – costumers, set designers and choreographers: take a bow.
Gloriously glitzy and glamorous, There’s No Business Like Show Business lights up during Marilyn’s all-too-brief screen time. I reckon this Monroe lady is gonna be a star.
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