Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB. USA, 1949. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Screenplay by Albert Hackett, Frances Goodrich, Ivan Tors, from a screenplay by Samson Raphaelson, based on the play Parfumerie by Miklos Laszlo. Cinematography by Harry Stradling Sr.. Produced by Joe Pasternak. Music by George Stoll, Robert Van Eps. Production Design by Randall Duell, Cedric Gibbons. Costume Design by Irene, Valles. Film Editing by Adrienne Fazan.
The classic film The Shop Around The Corner with James Stewart has been remade as a musical by MGM, starring Van Johnson and Judy Garland as colleagues at a music store who are not getting along in the slightest way. What they don’t realize is that the secret sweetheart letters that they both have been writing and responding to are actually their correspondence between each other. Garland’s comic timing is at its finest here, and she performs a slew of classic numbers, most of them standards from the turn-of-the-century when the film takes place, such as “Put Your Arms Around Me Honey”, “Play That Barbershop Chord” and the title song, but there’s also newer numbers like “I Don’t Care” (which Garland often performed in later concert shows). Her toddler daughter Liza Minnelli makes a cameo appearance in the film’s closing scene in this delightful musical. The original story was adapted as a Broadway musical (with original music) called She Loves Me and then remade as You’ve Got Mail in 1998 with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.