“Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be married to a girl who played baseball?”
Near the beginning of the 20th century, a pair of vaudeville performers (Gene Kelly and Sinatra) take a break from the stage while playing baseball for a team — The Wolves — newly acquired by a sports-loving female (Esther Williams). An acquaintance (Betty Garrett) of a noted gambler (Edward Arnold) takes an immediate fancy to Sinatra, while Kelly and Williams develop affections for one another — but when Arnolds decides to jinx the team’s chances of success by luring Kelly back to the stage, the future of the team and its romantic involvements are uncertain.
Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly co-starred in three musicals together: Anchors Aweigh(1945), On the Town (1949), and this Busby Berkeley-directed Technicolor musical, produced in the Arthur Freed unit of MGM. Williams — who manages to star in one swimming sequence — was a last-minute replacement for Ginger Rogers, and apparently didn’t enjoy the experience much; she’s ultimately less memorable than Garrett, who has a ton of fun singing, dancing, and aggressively wooing Sinatra. The song and dance numbers (many of which include Jules Munshin, co-star of On the Town) are colorful and vibrant, and it’s fun to see the early days of baseball given their glory on screen — however, this film doesn’t distinguish itself as must-see.
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
- Lively songs and dances
- Fine Technicolor cinematography
No, but it’s a fun diversion.